The site comprises a saltwater lake, located in the north of the Selenge River valley. There are extensive agricultural fields to the west and southwest of the lake, while, on the other side of the lake, there is a large wetland area with grassy meadows. Reed grows in some locations. In wet years, floodwater from the Selenge River enters the lake and the water level rises.
Many waterbirds, mostly ducks, use the site as a breeding, moulting and stopover site during migration. In addition, the agricultural fields provide feeding habitats for birds on migration. Globally Threatened species found at the site comprise Swan Goose Anser cygnoides (EN) and Great Bustard Otis tarda (VU). Congregatory waterbirds that regularly occur in numbers exceeding 1% of their flyway populations include Mallard Anas platyrhynchos, Northern Shoveler A. clypeata, Green-winged Teal A. crecca, Gadwall A. strepera, Bean Goose Anser fabalis, Greylag Goose A. anser and Ruddy Shelduck Tadorna ferruginea. In addition, thousands of Demoiselle Cranes Anthropoides virgo congregate near the site during their autumn migration.
Non-bird biodiversity: Mammal species found around the lake include Red Fox Vulpes vulpes, Corsac Fox V. corsac, Grey Wolf Canis lupus and Siberian Marmot Marmota sibirica (EN).
BirdLife International (2020) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Selengiin Tsagaan Lake. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 07/08/2020.