Parvar Protected Area

Year of compilation: 1994

Site description
A portion of the east-central Alborz Mountains c.35 km north of Semnan, spanning the divide from semi-arid steppe at c.1,800 m on the southern slopes to the upper levels of the humid Caspian forest in the north, peaking at 3,888 m. A deep, rain-shadow valley runs east-west through the centre of the reserve, with spectacular cliffs and scree slopes and some of the finest Juniperus forest in the Alborz. Other habitats include humid and dry high alpine zones, and rolling semi-arid Artemisia steppe in the south. Land ownership is public.

Key biodiversity
See box for key species. The reserve contains a very good variety of alpine and Juniperus forest species, as well as Caspian forest and montane steppic species. It is one of the few known localities for Mycerobas carnipes in Iran. Other notable species include Melanocorypha bimaculata, Phoenicurus erythronotus, S. hortensis, Phylloscopus trochiloides nitidus, Serinus pusillus, Rhodopechys mongolica and Emberiza buchanani. At least 101 species have been recorded in the reserve.

Non-bird biodiversity: Mammals: Canis lupus (V), Ursus arctos (rare), Panthera pardus (rare), Capra hircus aegagrus (rare) and Ovis ammon (rare).

Pressure/threats to key biodiversity
Parts of the area were first protected as the Parvar Reserve, established in 1962. A Protected Region of 37,937 ha was established in 1965, re-classified as a Protected Area and enlarged to 59,840 ha in the early 1970s. No threats are known.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2019) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Parvar Protected Area. Downloaded from on 19/10/2019.