|Central coordinates||58o 22.12' East 38o 10.46' North|
|IBA criteria||A4i, A4iii|
|Altitude||200 - 206m|
|Year of IBA assessment||2007|
Site description The IBA is a closed waterbody with sandy gently sloping banks, situated 5 km to the north-west of Ashgabat in the Ruhabat district of Akhal region. The IBA includes a water reservoir and adjoining shores. The reservoir was built in 1963 in the brackish Gurtli depression and obtains its water from the Karakumdarya river which is subject to seasonal flow regulation. The waterbody is 5 km long, 3.75 km wide and 4.36 m deep on average. The maximum depth is 7m and the water surface area is 80,000 hectares, with a shoreline length of 25 km. The shores are sandy, gently sloping, without any steep cliffs. There are plantations of deciduous and coniferous trees in places. In sheltered areas thickets of reed and tamarisk can be found. There is a recreation zone on the shore, attracting more than 200,000 people a year. There are beaches, a boathouse, a recreation department of a hunters and fishing society, rest houses and sport-health complexes. Hunting on the waterbody is banned and only amateur fishing is allowed. Fish fry are released from time to time to enrich the waterbody (100,000 fry were released in 2005). The climate is a dry hot summer and rather mild winter. Precipitation is lowest in July-August, highest in March-April. There is almost no snow. The average air temperature is 0.8C in January, +30.5C in July. The frost-free period is 232 days a year.
|Species||Season||Period||Population estimate||Quality of estimate||IBA Criteria||IUCN Category|
|Pygmy Cormorant Microcarbo pygmaeus||passage||2006-2007||700 individuals||good||A4i||Least Concern|
|A4iii Species group - waterbirds||winter||2006-2007||min 20,000 individuals||medium||A4iii|
|IUCN habitat||Habitat detail||Extent (% of site)|
|Desert||Desert & semi-desert - sandy||10%|
|Wetlands (inland)||Standing fresh water; Water-fringe vegetation||75%|
|Artificial - terrestrial||Forestry plantations; Other urban & industrial areas; Ruderal land||10%|
Land ownership State.
|Land-use||Extent (% of site)|
Other biodiversity There are more than 90 species of mammal, 32 of them are Rodents, 21 - Chiroptera, 22 – Carnivora, 7 – Insectivora, 2 – Artiodactyla and 1 - Lagomorpha. Common mammals are Rhombomys opimus, Meriones libycus, Spermophilopsis leptodactylus and Nesokia indica. Common reptiles are Natrix tesellata and Central Asian agama. Shore vegetation consists of thickets of reed (Phragmites australis) and Tamarix. Potamogeton pectinatus dominates the shallows and Myriophyllum the lake. There is a sparse cover of ephemerals on the fixed sandy shore (Calligonum, Salsola richteri, Epherda, Astragalus, Stipagrostis karelinii and others).
Protection status Not protected.
References Rajapov M. R (1999) Red Data Book of Turkmenistan. Volume 1. Invertebrates and vertebrate animals. Ashgabat.Turkmenistan. (in russian). Dementyev P.G. (1952) Birds of Turkmenistan, Ashgabat, Proceedings of the Turkmen Academy of Sciences TSSR, Volume 1. 546p.(in russian). Rustamov A.K. (1958) Birds of Turkmenistan, Ashgabat, Proceedings of the Turkmen Academy of Sciences TSSR, Volume 2. 333p. (in russian). Nurgeldyev O. N. (1969) Ecology of mammals of plain of Turkmenistan. Ashgabat. (russian). Kucheruk V. (2005) Lagomorpha and rodents of deserts of Central Asia. Мoscow, GEOS. (in russian). Kuchuruk V., Tashlyev A.O. (1995) Mammals of Turkmenistan. Vol.1, Ashgabat,Ylym. (in russian). Shammakov S. M. (1981) Reptile of plain of Turkmenistan. Ashgabat. (russian).
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Recommended citation BirdLife International (2014) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Gurtli. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 24/07/2014
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