Karnabchul Steppe

Country/territory: Uzbekistan

IBA criteria met: A1, A3, A4i, A4iii (2006)
For more information about IBA criteria, please click here

Area: 177,156 ha

Uzbekistan Society for the Protection of Birds
IBA conservation status
Year of assessment (most recent) State (condition) Pressure (threat) Response (action)
2006 not assessed very high negligible
For more information about IBA monitoring, please click here

Site description (2006 baseline)
The IBA is situated 30 km south of the city of Navoi. Karnabchul is a foothill plain of the Zeravshan ridge, which stretches southwards from Zirabulak and Ziadin mountains. A mountain stream arising in the Zirabulak Mountains crosses the area; the latter is cut with shallow scours, rivulets, and drying beds of temporary streams abounding with small pebbles and crushed stone. There are also salt-marsh depressions and takyrs deprived of any vegetation, and a huge salt marsh named Shorsai. The soil surface mainly consists of loamy-sand and loamy small crushed-stone desert sierozem and gray-brown gypsum soils showing varying levels of salinity.

Key biodiversity
The avifauna consists of 90 species, including 51 nesting species. A large number of species use this area for resting and feeding during migration. The most diverse are waterbirds, with 38 species noted - 11 species are Anseriformes; 13 shorebirds; 4 gulls and terns; 4 Rallidae; 5 Ciconiiformes and 2 species of crane. Five species are included in the IUCN Red Data Book: Falco cherrug, Falco naumanni, Aegypius monachus, Circus macrourus and Chlamydotis undulata. In addition Aquila chrysaetos, Hieraaetus pennatatus, Circaetus gallicus and Pterocles alchata are included in the Red Data Book of Uzbekistan. It is important to emphasize the key role of this site for the protection of Chlamydotis undulata. The number in Karnabchul reaches several dozen during the nesting period.

Non-bird biodiversity: Twenty-seven mammals inhabit the area. The main species are rodents - Citellus fulvus, Spermophilopsis leptodactylus, Allactaga sewertzovi, Allactaga elater, Dipus sagitta, Rattus turkestanikus, Mus musculus, Rhambomys opimus, Meriones lenducus, Ellobius talpinus, Cricetulus migratorius. Also recorded are: Lepus tolai, Vulpes corsac, Felis libyea, Vormela peregusna, Crocidura suaveoleus, Erinaceus auritus and Pipistrellus pipistrellus. Reptiles: Teratoscincus scincus, Gemnodactillus bedtschenkoi, Agama sanguinolenta, Phrynocephalus helioscopus, Phrynocephalus interscapularis, Varanus griseus, Eremias lineolata, Eremias grammica, Eryx tataricus, Taphrometopon lineolatum, Coliber karelini, Coluber tyria, Naja oxiana, and Testudo horsfieldi. Two species are included in the IUCN Red List (Varanus griseus and Testudo horsfieldi). Amphibians are represented by two species: Bufo viridis and Rana ridibunda. The vegetation cover is mainly comprised of wormwood and ephemeral formations. The dominant species are Aretmisia diffusa, Carex pachystylis and Poa bulbosa.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2023) Important Bird Area factsheet: Karnabchul Steppe. Downloaded from on 23/09/2023.