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Location Uzbekistan, Tashkent
Central coordinates 68o 45.37' East  40o 52.67' North
IBA criteria A1, A4i, A4iii
Area 4,446 ha
Altitude 245 - 277m
Year of IBA assessment 2006

Uzbekistan Society for the Protection of Birds (Affiliate)

Site description The "Balikchi" Fish-farm is situated in the flat country of NE Uzbekistan, 5-6 km to the south of the town of Chinaz on the right bank of the Sirdarya river. This territory belongs to the Low-Chirchic district of Tashkent region and borders on Sirdarya region. "Balikchi" is one of the unique non-natural reservoirs in the middle stretches of the Sirdarya river. It became operational in 1961. Fish are raised from eggs to a marketable weight. There are finishing and breeding ponds and an experimental acclimatization section here. There are two sources of water supply: by gravity from a canal from the Chirchik river and a pump station on the Sirdarya river. Water is released by gravity into the Sirdarya river. The climate is rather wet, with 300-700 mm of atmospheric precipitation a year.

Key Biodiversity The ecological conditions at the "Balikchi" Fish-farm (rich feeding and places to rest and nest) attract many waterbirds, especially piscivorous species. 104 species have been recorded. Aythya nyrоса and Coracias garrulus are included on the IUCN List of threatened animal species. Pelecanus onocrotalus, Phalacrocoraх pygmaeus, Egretta garzetta, Platalea leucorodia, Ciconia ciconia, Aythya nyrоса, Pandion haliaetus, Haliaeetus albicilla and Larus ichthyaetus are included in the National Red Book (2006).

Non-bird biodiversity: Mammals include nutria and jackal; amphibians and reptiles Rana ridibunda, Bufo viridis, Natrix tessellata, Pseudopus apodus, Vipera renardi, Coluber sp., Ablepharus pannonicus; fish Cyprinus carpio, Hypophthalmichthys molitrix, Ctenopharygodon idella, Ictalurus punctatus, Channa argus and Gambusia afinis. Wild poplar, osier willow, oleaster, Oriental plane and White poplar grow here. There are reedbeds on the shores of active ponds and tamarisk bushes on abandoned ponds.

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Ferruginous Duck Aythya nyroca passage  2006  434 adults only  good  A1  Near Threatened 
Great Crested Grebe Podiceps cristatus passage  1990-1993  320-1,115 adults only  good  A4i  Least Concern 
White Stork Ciconia ciconia passage  1996-2006  47-400 adults only  good  A4i  Least Concern 
Eurasian Spoonbill Platalea leucorodia passage  1996  270 adults only  good  A4i  Least Concern 
Grey Heron Ardea cinerea passage  2000  1,300 adults only  good  A4i  Least Concern 
Pygmy Cormorant Microcarbo pygmaeus resident  2006  721-3,249 adults only  good  A4i  Least Concern 
Great Cormorant Phalacrocorax carbo resident  1992-2006  55-3,000 adults only  good  A4i  Least Concern 
Black-headed Gull Larus ridibundus passage  1992  7,400 adults only  good  A4i  Least Concern 
A4iii Species group - waterbirds winter  1992  20,000 individuals  A4iii   

IBA Monitoring

2006 very high not assessed not assessed
Medium - based upon reliable but incomplete / partially representative data

Biological resource use fishing & harvesting aquatic resources - unintentional effects: large scale happening now whole area/population (>90%) moderate to rapid deterioration very high
Biological resource use hunting & collecting terrestrial animals - intentional use (species being assessed is the target) happening now whole area/population (>90%) moderate to rapid deterioration very high
Human intrusions and disturbance work and other activities happening now majority/most of area/population (50-90%) slow but significant deterioration high


IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Wetlands (inland)   100%

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
fisheries/aquaculture 100%

References 1.Data of the count of watebirds in "Balikchi" fish-station 12.12.2005 (in Russian) 2.E. Shernazarov (2006) Report on field surveys of IBA Balikchi (in Russian)

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2016) Important Bird and Biodiversity Area factsheet: Balykchi Fish Farm. Downloaded from on 28/10/2016

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