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Almaty Biosphere Reserve, Kazakhstan

The Almaty Biosphere Reserve is located on the Zailiysky Alatau ridge, on the watershed of several river basins featuring a number of lakes. Its wild fruit forests, predominantly consisting of wild apple trees, are home to diverse fauna. It is a popular recreational area for city dwellers from the entire region. The biosphere reserve aims to develop eco-tourism, as well as sustainable animal husbandry and agriculture, which are major sources of income in the area.

Designation date: 2020


Regional network: 

Ecosystem-based network: 




    Surface : 176,960 ha

    • Core area(s): 71,800 ha
    • Buffer zone(s): 27,080 ha
    • Transition zone(s): 78,080 ha

    Location: 43о10′N; 77о20′E

    Administrative Authorities

    Coordination Council
    Akku Village, Talgar City
    Almaty Oblast, 160400

    Tel.: +7 (727) 3073019/ +7 (727) 743 0241

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    Ecological Characteristics

    The Almaty Biosphere Reserve is located by the northern and southern slopes of the Ile (Zailiysky) Alatau ridge, the mountain system of the Northern Tien Shan. There are 960 species of flora diversity within this region including Iris albertii, Atraphaxis muschketowii, Oxytropis almaatensis, Pastinacopsis glacialis, and Cortusa semenovi. 39 species of mammals claim this region as their home including the snow leopard (Uncia uncia Sch), Tien Shan brown bear (Ursus arctos L.), Turkestan lynx (Lynx lynx L), and stone marten (Martes foina Erxl).

    The impressive avifauna of the region turns sights to the sky to see species such as Golden eagle (Aquila chrysaetus L), Bearded vulture (Gypaetus barbatus L), Black stork (Ciconia nigra L), Barbary falcon (Falco pelegrinoides Temm.), sickbill (Ibidorhyncha struthersii Vigors),  and Himalayan vulture (Gyps himalaensis Bubo) soaring majestically above.


    Socio-Economic Characteristics

    The inhabitants of the Almaty Biosphere reserve are mainly involved in agriculture, livestock, and mining activities. The main agricultural crops grown are wheat, potatoes, sunflowers, beets, beans, corn, apple trees and grapes. Livestock breeding is primarily focused on sheep breeding, horse breeding and cattle. Tourism in the region is growing, primarily in the two closest cities of Almaty and Taldykorgan. The main languages spoken in the region are Kazakh and Russian.

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    Last updated: November 2020