A small area of sandy plains on the southern edge of the Kara Kum desert, around the small town of Lotfatabad and village of Shilagan on the Turkmenistan border. This is one of only two places in north-east Iran where the international border extends down from the hills to incorporate a section of the sparsely vegetated sandy plains of the Kara Kum desert. Much of the area is under irrigated cultivation (vegetable gardens, vineyards and wheat fields), and ponds and ditches support dense herbaceous vegetation with some Salix.
See box for key species. One of only two localities in Iran where Parus bokharensis has been recorded. Other breeding species include Accipiter badius, Sturnus roseus and Emberiza bruniceps.
Non-bird biodiversity: None known to BirdLife International.
Pressure/threats to key biodiversity
No conservation measures are known to have been proposed and there is no information on threats to the site.
Data-sheet compiled by Dr D. A. Scott, reviewed by Dept of Environment.