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Toson-Khulstai Biosphere Reserve, Mongolia

Located in North-Eastern Mongolia, in a transition zone between forest steppe and grassland ecosystems, the area is designated as a Nature Reserve to protect the low mountains, rolling hills, and dry steppe ecosystems that are the habitat for the Mongolian gazelle and other wildlife.

The Toson Khulstai Reserve belongs to 2 Provinces (Dornod and Khenti) of Mongolia and consists of areas of 5 soum units (Bayan Ovoo, Norovolin, Khulun Buir, Tsagaan Ovoo, and Byantumen) of this 2 provinces.

Designation date: 2020

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Regional network: 

Ecosystem-based network: 




    Surface : 1,010,356.31 ha

    • Core area(s): 469,928 ha
    • Buffer zone(s): 205,655.04 ha
    • Transition zone(s): 334,773.27 ha

    Location: 48.17800-113.00700

    Administrative Authorities

    Toson Khulstai Biosphere Reserve, Dornod Protected Areas Adminitration (Dornod PAA)
    PO Box 401
    Dornod Province 21000

    Tel.: 70583373

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    Ecological Characteristics

    The biosphere reserve aims to protect the low mountains, rolling hills, and dry steppe ecosystems that are the habitat of the Mongolian gazelle and other wildlife, such as the globally endangered White naped crane, the upland buzzard, the steppe eagle and the Siberian marmot.

    According to Udvardy’s Biogeographical classification (Udvardy 1975) published by the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources, Toson Khulstai NatureReserve is included in the Mongolian-Manchurian Steppe the Palaearctic Realm. The biome is temperate grassland.



    Socio-Economic Characteristics

    Currently, approximately 200 herder families with 91,000 head of cattle live within the territory of the Core Area. Out of this larger number, 18 herder families are permanent residents and 47 are nomadic herding families that are only seasonal residents, moving in and out of the area. In this region, herder’s livelihoods depend on their livestock. The county centers and settlements are not located in the Core Area of the Biosphere Reserve.

    An agreement was reached with the nomadic herder communities who live seasonally in the area to ensure sustainable grazing practices.




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    Last updated: January 2021