Sites - Important Bird and Biodiversity Areas (IBAs)
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72o 29.21' East 37o 25.55' North
A1, A3, A4i
3,500 - 4,800m
Year of IBA assessment
Site description The IBA is located 110 km from the provincal centre, Horog, and 75 km from the district centre, Roshtkala. It is situated in the northern part of the Shungan ridge and includes a large part of the Djavshangoaskaya valley and southern slope of the Shungan ridge. It is a mountain highland valley with Lake Turumtaykul, which is located at one of the highest altitudes in Central Asia (4,202 m above sea level). The lake's area is 900 hectares and the maximum depth is about 18 m. It is freshwater. The most numerous fish in the lake are Schizothorax intermedius and Schizopugopsis stoliczkai.
The most important areas within the IBA are Djavshangoz valley and Turumtaykul valley. The former is located at an altitude of 3,400 m above sea level and is a wide plain between the Shungan and Shakhdara ridges. In the middle part of the valley the river floods and creates many islands which attract lots of waterbirds. The Turumtaykul valley is located at 4,500 m above sea level and divides the Shungan ridge into northern and southern parts. Turumtaykul Lake is located in the central part of the valley and presents the core zone. Several rivers inflow to the lake and two outflow. Of the latter, the largest is the Tokuzbulak in the east, which leads into the river Gunt. The western outflow feeds into the river Shakhdara.
A significant part of the IBA is used as pasture, with hay fields at lower altitudes. Arable land is scarce.
There are two settlements within the IBA, Djavshangoz and Barchid, with a combined total population of about 750 individuals.
Key Biodiversity More than 95 species of birds have been recorded.
Residents include: Anas platyrhynchos, Mergus merganser, Gypaetus barbatus, Aegypius monachus, Gyps himalayensis, Aquila chrysaetos, Pyrrhocorax graculus, Pyrrhocorax pyrrhocorax, Corvus corax and Montifringilla nivalis.
Nesting species include: Tadorna ferruginea, Tringa totanus, Columba rupestris, Caprimulgus europaeus, Calandrella acutirostris, Riparia rupestris, Motacilla citreola, Motacilla alba, Prunella himalayana, Phoenicurus erythrogaster, Oenanthe isabellina and Carduelis flavirostris.
Spring and autumn migrants include: Ardea cinerea, Anas strepera, Anas crecca, Fulica atra and Upupa epops.
National Red Data Book species are Gyps himalayensis, Gypaetus barbatus, Aquila chrysaetos, Falco cherrug and Chaimarrornis leucocephala.
Non-bird biodiversity: Fish: Schizopygopsis stoliczcai and Schizothorax intermedius inhabit the rivers and lakes of the Djavshngoz valley and Turumtaykul depression.
Mammals exhibit high diversity and endemism. Common rodents include Marmota caudata, Mus musculus and Alticola argentatus. Leporidae are Lepus tolai and Ochonota roylei (Odinashoev,1987). Capra sibirica occurs in the mountains. Carnivora include Uncia uncia, Canis lupus, Vulpes vulpes, Mustela nivalis and Mustela erminea.
The vegetation of the IBA is represented mainly by xerophytes as in other sites in mountain highlands and the common vegetation cover is desertic in character.