The Goyungyrlan lakes system is located 180 km to the southwest of Dashoguz city, to the southwest of the Shasenemskiy Zakaznik. The area of the lakes is 24,700 hectares, the maximal depth is 16.4m. The site consists of a series of reservoirs connected by channels which receive part of the collection/drainage water from the Ilyalinskiy collector channel. In the southwest the lakes are surrounded by the Goyungyrlan hills, and in the east and north by desert.
67 species of bird have been recorded but is probable that more than 100 species actually occur. This breaksdown into migrants - 34 species, passage-nesting - 20 species and non-migrants - 13 species. Passeriformes dominate with 20 species, followed by Falconiformes - 12 species, Charadriiformes - 11 species and Anseriformes - 7 species. The total number of water birds is about 30 species.
The site is important for migration for both water birds and terrestrial birds. Spring migration lasts from March to the middle of May, autumn migration from September to November, some species winter. Pelecanus crispus, Falco cherrug, Aegypius monachus, Falco naumanni, Chlamydotis undulata and Coracias garrulus are listed on the IUCN Red List and the Red Data Book of Turkmenistan (1999). Pelecanus onocrotalus, Aquila chrysaetos, Circaetus gallicus only appear in the Red Data book of Turkmenistan (1999).
Criterion А1 applies for: Falco cherrug.
Non-bird biodiversity: The flora of Lake Goyungyrlan includes 250 species of higher plants. In wetter areas tugai vegetation occurs, in other areas xerophilous species.
In areas adjacent to the lake (eg at Shahsenem) more than 500 species of insects have been recorded, including Collembola - 5 species, Thysanura - 4 species, Blattoptera - 4 species, Isoptera - 3 species, Orthoptera - 21 species, Dermoptera - 1 species, Psocoptera - 2 species, Homoptera - 66 species, Coleoptera - 314 species, Hepidoptera - 33 species, Hymenoptera - 21 species, and Diptera - 31 species (Soyunov, 1991).
2 species of Amphibian occur, and 14 species of Reptile: turtles - 1, lizards - 10 and snakes - 3 species.
Excluding bats, 24 species of Mammal occur: predators - 12, rodents - 5, ungulates - 5 species.
Pressure/threats to key biodiversity
Currently the ecosystem of the IBA is considered to be in a safe condition. The greatest threats are illegal hunting of waterfowl and illegal fishing.
Conservation responses/actions for key biodiversity
The only detailed studies carried out have been those of the Dashoguz antiplague stations (Rustamov, Ptushenko, 1959; Atayev, Amanow, Gajyyev, 2005; Atayev, Amanow, Arazow, 2006).
BirdLife International (2023) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Goyungyrlan. Downloaded from
http://www.birdlife.org on 20/03/2023.