email a friend
printable version
Location Turkmenistan, Mary
Central coordinates 61o 19.29' East  37o 10.20' North
IBA criteria A1, A4i, A4iii
Area 39,032 ha
Altitude 150 - 210m
Year of IBA assessment 2007

BirdLife Central Asia Programme (BirdLife Direct Action Programme)

Site description The Khankhovuz water reservoir was constructed between 1962 and 1966. It is one of the main bulk water reservoirs in the Garagumdarya zone. The IBA is located 65 km to the southeast of Tedjen city and southwest of Mary city.

Key Biodiversity The avifauna of the IBA includes 300 species of which more than 100 are waterfowl and waterbirds. The IBA consists of wetlands in the desert and provides favourable conditions for waterfowl and waterbirds, especially during migration and in winter. Criterion А1 applies for Pelecanus crispus. Several other A1 species have been recorded but current information does not currently justify them being proposed: Aythya nyroca, Oxyura leucocephala, Anser erythropus, Marmaronetta angustirostris. Criterion А4iii applies for the concentrations of waterfowl and waterbirds which number more than 20,000 on migration and in winter.

Non-bird biodiversity: Fish: – about 20 species, amphibians – 2 species, reptiles – 25 species, and mammals – about 30 species. Flora: – coastal hydrophilic vegetation: Karelinia caspia, Phragmites australis, Salsola, Calligonum L., Haloxylon persicum, H.aphyllum.

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Dalmatian Pelican Pelecanus crispus winter  2007  33 individuals  medium  A1  Vulnerable 
Pygmy Cormorant Microcarbo pygmaeus winter  2007  4,008 individuals  medium  A4i  Least Concern 
Great Cormorant Phalacrocorax carbo winter  2007  1,700 individuals  medium  A4i  Least Concern 
A4iii Species group - waterbirds winter  2007  min 20,000  medium  A4iii   

IBA Monitoring

2007 high not assessed not assessed
Good - based on reliable and complete / representative data

Agriculture and aquaculture marine and freshwater aquaculture - subsistence/artisinal aquaculture happening now some of area/population (10-49%) moderate to rapid deterioration high
Biological resource use hunting & collecting terrestrial animals - intentional use (species being assessed is the target) happening now some of area/population (10-49%) slow but significant deterioration medium


IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Desert   5%
Wetlands (inland)   95%

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
fisheries/aquaculture 70%
hunting 10%
tourism/recreation 5%
water management 15%

Protection status Not protected.

References Rustamov, E.A. (1992). Wintering of a waterfowl in Turkmenistan. Biology Science.№3. Moscow. (in Russian). Rustamov, E.A., Poslavskiy, A.N. (1990). Geography, ecology and protection of wintering of waterfowl in Turkmenistan. Nature protection in Turkmenistan. Ashgabat. p. 56-100. (in Russian).

Contribute  Please click here to help BirdLife conserve the world's birds - your data for this IBA and others are vital for helping protect the environment.

Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2016) Important Bird and Biodiversity Area factsheet: Khankhovuz. Downloaded from on 24/10/2016

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