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Location Turkmenistan, Balkan
Central coordinates 55o 28.27' East  41o 13.32' North
IBA criteria A1
Area 65,820 ha
Altitude 33 - 221m
Year of IBA assessment 2007

BirdLife Central Asia Programme (BirdLife Direct Action Programme)

Site description The IBA includes Depmechay, the southern scarp of the Ustyurt plateau and the Kazaklyshor depression on the border with Kazakhstan.

Key Biodiversity The avifauna of the IBA includes 240 species, basically from the desert complex. Rare species listed in the Red Data Book of Turkmenistan (1999) are: resident - Aquila chrysaetos, Falco cherrug, Bubo bubo; passage - Aquila heliaca, Circus macrourus, Buteo buteo, Circaetus gallicus. Criterion А1 applies for Falco cherrug. The following A1 species also occur but not at qualifying levels - Haliaeetus leucoryphus, Aquila heliaca, Circus macrourus, Falco naumanni.

Non-bird biodiversity: Mammals - more than 40 species, half from which are rodents (20 species), the others are predators (8), chiropterans (5), insectivores (4), ungulates (2). Reptiles are represented by 30 species. Flora includes about 450 species of higher plants. The vegetation of the depressions is represented by halophytes and salsolas. Fixed sand is represented by a few species of Calligonum and the rare Salsola richteri.

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Saker Falcon Falco cherrug resident  2003-2007  10 individuals  medium  A1  Endangered 

IBA Monitoring

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

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   10%
Rocky areas   90%

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
military 10%
not utilised 90%

Protection status Not protected.

References Atamuradov, H.I. (1999) Red Data Book of Turkmenistan. - Vol.1. – Ashgabat, Turkmenistan. (in Russian).

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2016) Important Bird and Biodiversity Area factsheet: Depmechay. Downloaded from on 21/10/2016

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