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Location Armenia, Syunik
Central coordinates 45o 46.73' East  39o 41.05' North
IBA criteria A1, B2
Area 5,923 ha
Altitude 2,028 - 2,871m
Year of IBA assessment 2002

Armenian Society for the Protection of Birds (Affiliate)

Site description Gorayk IBA is located in the south of Armenia in Syunik Province. It occupies Syunik plateau and includes part of Spandarian reservoir built on Vorotan River. The area is predominantly agricultural with livestock grazing and pasture use making the basis of most agricultural activity.

Key Biodiversity At present, it is the only IBA known to support a small breeding colony of Globally Threatened Lesser Kestrel in Armenia. However, it is also noted for the presence of orher IUCN listed species, Cinereous Vulture, Corncrake, Roller – many of national or international conservation importance.

Non-bird biodiversity: Gorayk IBA forms part of the Caucasus Hotspot. Ecosystems here provide key habitats for animal species such as wolf, fox, stone marten, badger and hare. Some species of amphibians, reptiles and rodents also inhabit the area.

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Lesser Kestrel Falco naumanni breeding  1995-2006  10-20 breeding pairs  good  A1, B2  Least Concern 
Egyptian Vulture Neophron percnopterus breeding  1995  1-2 breeding pairs  medium  A1  Endangered 
Golden Eagle Aquila chrysaetos breeding  1995  2-3 breeding pairs  medium  B2  Least Concern 
Buteo rufinus breeding  1995  5-6 breeding pairs  medium  B2  Not Recognised 

IBA Monitoring

2006 high unfavourable medium
Medium - based upon reliable but incomplete / partially representative data

Agriculture and aquaculture livestock farming and ranching (includes forest grazing) - nomadic grazing happening now some of area/population (10-49%) slow but significant deterioration medium
Biological resource use hunting & collecting terrestrial animals - intentional use (species being assessed is the target) happening now majority/most of area/population (50-90%) slow but significant deterioration high
Human intrusions and disturbance work and other activities past (and unlikely to return) and no longer limiting whole area/population (>90%) moderate to rapid deterioration low
Natural system modifications other ecosystem modifications happening now some of area/population (10-49%) slow but significant deterioration medium

Falco naumanni Lesser Kestrel 25 15 breeding pairs 60 unfavourable

Some of site covered (10-49%)  A comprehensive and appropriate management plan exists that aims to maintain or improve the populations of qualifying bird species  Substantive conservation measures are being implemented but these are not comprehensive and are limited by resources and capacity  medium 

Local conservation groups The local conservation group below is working to support conservation at this IBA.

Name Year formed
TV tower crew 2007


IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Artificial - terrestrial Arable land; Other urban and industrial areas  minor
Rocky areas   minor
Grassland Alpine, subalpine and boreal grassland; Steppes and dry calcareous grassland  major
Artificial - aquatic   minor

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
agriculture minor
hunting minor
rangeland/pastureland major
energy production and mining minor
fisheries/aquaculture minor
Notes: Small percentage of aquaculture is present in IBA.

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2016) Important Bird and Biodiversity Area factsheet: Gorayk. Downloaded from on 27/10/2016

To provide new information to update this factsheet or to correct any errors, please email BirdLife