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      Biosphere Reserve Information



  General Description   The Sary-Chelek Biosphere Reserve is situated in the western Tien Shan Mountains on the southern spurs of the Chatkal Range in the west of Kyrgyzstan. The main part of the area comprises a high mountain basin protected to the north, west and east by mountain ridges. The mountain lake Sary-Chelek is situated at about 2,000 meters above sea level, with an area of 470 hectares and a depth of 245 meters. Due to the protection by the surrounding mountain ranges, winters are relatively mild and rich in snow, and summers are warm and wet. The elevation of the biosphere reserve ranges from 1,200 to 4,247 meters above sea level. Main habitats comprise forests, meadows, steppes, rocks, and screes and some aquatic areas.
The central and lower region is strongly dissected and covered by nut-fruit forests with walnut (Juglans regia), apple (Malus spp.), pear (Pyrus spp.) and an understory of Prunus divaricata. This forest can grow here due to the favorable micro-climate, a reflection of the local relief. Many of the fruits found in the forests here have a high socio-economic value.
Before the creation of the biosphere reserve, selective logging of the forest, grass cutting and cattle grazing were practiced. Today, serious problems arise from recreational activities, unorganized tourism, thoroughfare through the reserve and construction work on the banks of Sary-Chelek Lake. Research in the area has been carried out since 1977.
  Major ecosystem type   Mixed mountain and highland systems
  Major habitats & land cover types   Alpine forests with walnut (Juglans regia), fir (Abies semenovii), spruce (Picea schrenkiana) and grape (Vitis silvestris); meadows; tree-shrub communities of juniper (Juniperus sp.), spruce, fir etc.; nut forest dominated by walnut with groups of apple (Malus spp.), pears (Pyrus spp.) and an understory of Prunus divaricata, abelia (Abelia curumbosa), exochords (Exochorda spp.) and juniper; steppe habitats; rocks and screes; water bodies
  Location   4121' to 4158'N; 7151' to 7202'E
  Area (hectares)    
  Total   23,868
  Core area(s)   18,080
  Buffer zone(s)  
  Transition area(s) when given   2,394
  Altitude (metres above sea level)   +1,200 to +4,247
  Year designated   1978
  Administrative authorities   Director Maiman Mamyrbekov Deputy Director Akynaly Dubanaev
  Brief description   Floristic and faunal inventory
Pollutant monitoring
Reforestation research
Ecology of woody plants/commercial species
Ecology of birds and mammals
  Specific variables...    
  Abiotic   Monitoring/methodologies, pollution, pollutants.
  Biodiversity   Afforestation/Reforestation, birds, ecology, fauna, flora, mammals, plants.
  Socio-economic   Economically important species.
  Integrated monitoring   n.a.
  Contact address    
Sary-Chelek Biosphere Reserve
Arkit Village, Aksy Region
715705 Jalal-Abadscaja oblast

Last updated: 13/01/2000

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