Koymat - Begarslan

Country/territory: Turkmenistan

IBA criteria met: A1, A3 (2007)
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Area: 38,764 ha

IBA conservation status
Year of assessment (most recent) Threat (pressure) Condition (state) Action (response)
2007 high not assessed not assessed
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Site description (baseline)
The Koymat-Begarslan IBA is located in the northwest of Turkmenistan, within the so-called Tuarkyr-Ustjurts clay-rubble natural region. The southern part of the IBA is 100 km to the north-east of Bereket and continues in a northerly direction for 105 km. Administratively the site is located in Balkan region. The IBA represents the western edge of the Chelyunkgyr plateau which splits sharply with the tectonic scarp, Koymatdag. The scarp runs north-south and, in the south, adjoins another tectonic scarp, Begarslandag, in the west, with the highest point being 488 m above sea level. All of the site is a system of steep cliffs (in the upper belt), large deep ravines and gullies (in the middle belt) and closed hollows (in the lower belt). Along the narrow and highest cliffs clay-rubble prevails with communities of Anabasis salsa and Artemisia kemrudica, A. diffusa, etc. Cliffs can reach 30-50 m in height. The main cliff is a combination of stony-chalky strata, cut by numerous eolations, jagged edges, ledges, niches, cracks and gullies. There are grey-brown desert soils. In the numerous ravines and gullies where water only runs during rains, more variegated soil-vegetative cover is observed. In deep depressions there are solonchaks with sparse halophytes and, between them on gentle slopes, hilly sands with ephemerals and small shrubs, but these occupy a small area in comparison to the solonchaks. The average annual temperature is 12C, the maximum 43C, the minimum –30C. The annual rainfall is about 100 mm.

Key biodiversity
The avifauna consists of 103 species. Non-migratory (resident) - 8 (Buteo rufinus, Aquila chrysaetos, Falco cherrug, Columba livia, Bubo bubo, Athene noctua, Corvus ruficollis, Scotocerca inquieta), 28 – passage/nesting (breeding visitor) (Circaetus gallicus, Neophron percnopterus, Falco tinnunculus, Apus apus and Apus melba), 94 passage and 8 wintering. Species in the Red Data Book of Turkmenistan (1999): Circaetus gallicus, Aquila heliaca, Aquila chrysaetos, Aegypius monachus, Falco peregrinus, Falco naumanni, Falco cherrug and Bubo bubo.

Non-bird biodiversity: Mammals include Cuon alpinus, Mellivora capensis, Felis caracal and Hystrix indica. Included in the Red Data Book of Turkmenistan (1999): Mellivora capensis, Hyaena hyaena (possibly extinct), Felis manul (possibly extinct), Felis caracal and Hystrix indica.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2023) Important Bird Area factsheet: Koymat - Begarslan. Downloaded from http://datazone.birdlife.org/site/factsheet/22108 on 05/06/2023.