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Location Kyrgyzstan, Ysyk-Köl
Central coordinates 78o 10.60' East  42o 46.50' North
IBA criteria A4i, A4iii
Area 100,000 ha
Altitude 1,609 m
Year of IBA assessment 2010

Public Association NABS (Affiliate)

Site description Territory includes mudflats along the shores, sea buckthorn thickets growing along the 2 km length of shores, shallow floodplains, estuaries of Tyup, Djergalan, Kara-Kol, Kizil- Suu rivers. The territory is situated in close proximity to Karakol city.

Key Biodiversity Criterion A4iii is applied to the site because of the big concentration of wintering waterfowl. During stopover for resting and feeding, up to 2,5 thousand Demoiselle crane, many waders, geese (Bean Goose), as well as White-headed ducks may stop here. Whooper swan and White-tailed eagle are common in winter. Tundra swan is rare.From 15 to 40 thousands individuals of 30 species winter here each year.Issyk-Kul basin hosts 267 bird species. Mallard, Gadwall, Common and Red-Crested pochards, Common coot and Great Crested grebe breed here. Species seen during the passage include Demoiselle crane, Northern Pintail, Garganey and Shoveler. Whooper and Mute swans, Goldeneye, Red-crested pochard and occasionally Tundra swan winter here.

Non-bird biodiversity: Mammals occur here are fox, ondatra, jackal, badger, weasel, water shrew and voles. Amphibians are Marsh frog and European green toad. Plants are sea buckthorn thickets, plantings of poplar, elm, barberry, sedges and reed.

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Northern Pintail Anas acuta passage  1976-1986  6,000-12,000 individuals  medium  A4i  Least Concern 
Ruddy Shelduck Tadorna ferruginea unknown  1976-1986  600-6,000 unknown  medium  A4i  Least Concern 
Red-crested Pochard Netta rufina winter  1976-1986  2,000-4,000 individuals  medium  A4i  Least Concern 
Common Goldeneye Bucephala clangula winter  1976-1986  400-1,000 individuals  medium  A4i  Least Concern 
Black-necked Grebe Podiceps nigricollis winter  1976-1986  200-400 individuals  medium  A4i  Least Concern 
Demoiselle Crane Anthropoides virgo passage  1976-1986  2,000-6,000 individuals  medium  A4i  Least Concern 
A4iii Species group - waterbirds passage  1976-1986  9,000-22,000 individuals  medium  A4iii   
A4iii Species group - waterbirds winter  1976-1986  15,000-40,000 individuals  medium  A4iii   

IBA Monitoring

2006 medium not assessed low

Agriculture and aquaculture livestock farming and ranching (includes forest grazing) - small-holder grazing, ranching or farming happening now small area/few individuals (<10%) no or imperceptible deterioration low
Agriculture and aquaculture marine and freshwater aquaculture - subsistence/artisinal aquaculture happening now small area/few individuals (<10%) slow but significant deterioration low
Biological resource use logging & wood harvesting - unintentional effects: subsistence/small scale happening now small area/few individuals (<10%) no or imperceptible deterioration low
Human intrusions and disturbance work and other activities happening now some of area/population (10-49%) slow but significant deterioration medium

Some of site covered (10-49%)  Unknown  Some limited conservation initiatives are in place  low 

Protected areas

Protected area Designation Area (ha) Relationship with IBA Overlap with IBA (ha)  
Issyk Kul UNESCO-MAB Biosphere Reserve 4,311,588 protected area contains site 0  
Issyk-Kul State Nature Reserve 19,000 protected area contains site 0  
Isyk-Kul State Reserve with the Lake Isyk-Kul Wetlands of International Importance (Ramsar) 623,600 protected area contains site 0  


IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Shrubland Low bushes; Scrub  18%
Grassland Humid  55%
Wetlands (inland) Raised bogs  30%
Coastline Lagoons; Mudflats & sandflats; Shingle & stony beaches  28%
Artificial - terrestrial Arable land; Forestry plantations  10%

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
agriculture 10%
hunting 20%
nature conservation and research 50%

Protection status Issyk-Kul reserve consists of 12 sites in the IBA territory consists of 7 sites.

Acknowledgements Data-sheet compiled 25-09-2006 by S. V. Kulagin (NABU), received by BirdLife Cambridge May 2008, translated by Tsovinar Hovhannisyan in summer 2010, entered into WBDB by Rory McCann in autumn 2010.

References Ardamin I. (1976) Wintering of Waterfowl in Issyk-Kul. Studies of Issyk-Kul reserve. Frunze “Kyrgyzstan” p. 45-62 Kydyraliev A. (1976) Waterfowl and waterbirds of Issyk-Kul reserve. Studies of Issyk-Kul reserve. Frunze “Kyrgyzstan” p. 24-44 Counts of waterfowl. Chronicle “Nature of Issyk-Kul reserve” 1987 Yanushevich A. I. and others (1959) Birds of Kyrgyzstan Vol. 1

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2016) Important Bird and Biodiversity Area factsheet: Eastern Issyk Kul Lake. Downloaded from on 25/10/2016

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