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Irgiz-Turgay reserve.

Ecological tours on Western Kazakhstan.

“How many birds! In any lakeside pond
Touch sedge and the swan will go high.
You jump - you look like a deflated falcon is manual
From under a cloud of a swan beats on the fly
Come back girl - shout:
“Wait, show me what you got, young, single!”

Abay Kunanbayev "Spring". Translation by L, Shubin.

Nature of the Western Kazakhstan.

Irgiz-Turgai state nature reserve was established in 2007 on the territory of Irgiz area of 763 549 ha. Reserve was created to preserve and restore natural systems, protection of habitats, migration routes saiga preserve the unique wetlands of the Irgiz-Turgay lakes system, as one of the largest concentration of wetland birds during their seasonal migration and moult; breeding flamingos, waterfowl, spawning grounds of fish.
Geologically, the Irgiz-Turgay reserve belongs to the Turanian plate and is composed of two distinctly different sets of rocks: stationed Precambrian and Paleozoic rocks that form the Foundation of nearly flat-lying Mesozoic-Cenozoic sediments, forming a platform cover.
The climate is continental, with little precipitation (about 200 mm), the abundance of solar radiation, greater dryness and intensity of the processes of evaporation and significant fluctuations in seasonal and daily temperatures. The summer is moderately hot, mostly Sunny.
The prevailing temperature of July is the day With 25-30, night 12 - 18 C. the Absolute maximum can reach 43 - 44 C. Winter is cold, long, with average January temperature of 17 C. the site is located in the subzone of brown soils.
The peculiarity of the soil cover is strong salinity, mainly light mechanical composition and the wide distribution of hydromorphic soils, solonchaks and solonetzes. Flora includes 430 species from 64 families, 216 genera: the largest of the Asteraceae (64 species) – tansy tysyachelistnika, wormwood Austrian, cousin dissected, souray saline, etc.
Chenopodiaceae (29 species), Cyperaceae (24 species). Riparian-aquatic vegetation marked reed, bulrush, cattail, bolboschoenus, Susak, Alisma, Wapato, water Buttercup, the most typical, horsetail, water moss; of these aquatic plants - water lilies, duckweed, pondweed, uruti, Naiad, pemphigus, hornwort, 9 species of horopito and 42 species varieties and forms of the dominant microalgae. Wildlife Irgiz-Turgai state nature reserve.
In the reserve found 29 species of mammals, 250 species of birds, 14 species of reptiles, 4 species of amphibians and 10 species of fish. The ichthyofauna is represented by ten species: carp, silver and gold crucian carp, IDE, roach, bream, tench, perch, ruff, pike.
Reptiles – marsh and the Central Asian tortoise, the squeaky gekkonid, ctenodactylidae Gecko, takyr the Agama, Agama-hot pants, long-eared spotted toad, agile, fast, and colorful lizards, Coluber, snake, steppe Viper, water snake.
Birds are represented, mainly, representatives of the wetland complex, comprising 109 species. In seasonal migration and moult fly through here at least 2-3 million birds waterfowl and aquatic species. Widely represented passerine birds (90 species), mostly tree Pipit, garden and grey warblers, grey and small flycatchers, Wheatears (ordinary, dancer, Wheatear, desert).
Thickets meets red-headed Bunting and great grey Shrike. Open landscapes prefer birds of prey: pallid Harrier, steppe and Kestrel, Golden eagle, Imperial eagle, steppe eagle and others, all 30 species. Here there are 32 rare and endangered species of birds listed in the Red book of Kazakhstan: pink and curly pelicans, spoonbill, glossy IBIS, little egret, Flamingo, Bewick's Swan, whooper swans, red-breasted goose, white-headed duck, Siberian crane, common crane, Demoiselle cranes, great bustard, Jack, little bustard, sociable lapwing, slender-billed Curlew, black-headed gull, black-bellied and pin-tailed Sandgrouse, Sajda, peregrine Falcon, Saker Falcon, white tailed eagle and Dolgopol, Golden eagle, Imperial eagle, steppe eagle, serpent eagle, osprey, common vole, gopher Sandstone, Prairie birch mouse, pika, on clay plains – Tolstoy jerboa, takyrs and solonchaks - thermogenic, on light soils – yellow ground squirrel and amorani; in reed and Mace thickets in shallow areas along the banks of rivers and lakes meet water vole, muskrat, wild boar.
From predators in open spaces inhabited by Korsak, steppe polecat, pervasive Fox, sometimes the wolf. In the southern part of the reserve saigas.

Authority:
"The ecological project» Natural resources of the Aktyubinsk area. http:aktobe.su

Photos
Alexander Petrov.