Mongolia is located at the junction of the taiga regions of Siberia and the deserts of Central Asia, leading to the formation of specific natural ecosystems. In the aggregate of all environmental conditions Mongolia quite characteristic: it is due to its inland location, the history of formation of the territory, high hypsometric level and bizarre combination of mountains, plains and intermountain depressions. At the same time there is a significant contrast to the natural factors are distinct parts of the country. Mongolia’s territory is vast: the length from north to south more than 1,200 kilometers from west to east – 2368 km. The variety of landscapes are distinguished highlands, the mountain taiga belt, forest-steppe zone, steppe zone, semi-desert and desert areas.
Mountains occupy almost 2/3 of the country, with some peaks covered by snow and higher than 4000 m above sea level, there are glaciers. In the intermountain basins and valleys are more than 3,000 permanent lakes with fresh and salt water. In the north, in the mountains and in the Khentei Khubsugul dominates mountain taiga, to the men of the southern border of the taiga zone of Eastern Siberia. The vast mountain spaces hr. Khangai, Mongolian Altai, the western slope of the southern periphery and Hingana Khentei busy mountain steppe and forest steppe areas reduced. These landscapes of generally zonal stretch, located at an altitude of 1000 m above sea level. seas. An intermediate position is occupied by the high plains of eastern Mongolia occupied the steppe vegetation. And finally, the southern regions of the country should be referred to the desert steppe zone, which are closed in the extreme south to the zone sharply continental deserts of Central Asia.
On the territory of Mongolia is dominated by the moderate sharply continental climate with rainfall of 100 mm or less in the desert, 100 to 200 mm – in the semi-deserts and up to 600 mm – in the mountains Khentei and Altai. The average July temperature relatively low – + 20-25 ° C, in January – 8 … 30 ° C. Over the past 60 years the average annual temperature in the country increased by 1,56 °. According to the calculations of the Institute of Meteorology MAN, it will continue to rise and, in 2020 – by 1,4 °, 2050 – by 3,0 °, and by 2080 – by 5,1 °.
It passes through Mongolia global watershed: the south lies the region of closed basins and lakes in Central Asia. Mongolia, representing the transition region from the Siberian taiga to the deserts of Central Asia, shows all the signs of this transition and in the plant and animal world, and in the north of the country is dominated daurskie elements in the south – central Asia, and in the east there is a marked influence of the Manchu species.
The huge territory, the diversity of the landscape, soil, flora and climatic zones create favorable conditions for the habitat of a wide variety of animals. Rich and diverse fauna of Mongolia. Like its flora, fauna of Mongolia is a mixture of species of the northern taiga of Siberia, the steppes and deserts of Central Asia.
The fauna includes 138 species of mammals, 436 birds, 8 amphibians, 22 reptiles, 13 000 species of insects, 75 species of fish and many invertebrates. In Mongolia, a great variety and abundance of game animals, including many valuable fur and other animals. The forests are sable, lynx, deer, deer, musk deer, elk, deer; in the steppes – tarbagan, wolf, fox and antelope gazelle; deserts – wild ass, wild cat, antelope, gazelle and saiga, wild camel. The mountains are common Gobi argali mountain sheep, goats, and large predatory leopard. Snow leopard, snow leopard in the recent past has been widely distributed in the mountains of Mongolia, it is now mainly lives in the Gobi Altai, and the number decreased to thousands of individuals. Mongolia is a country of birds. Demoiselle are ordinary bird. Large flocks of cranes are often collected directly on the asphalt road. Close to the road often seen scoters, eagles, vultures. Geese, ducks, sandpipers, cormorants, herons and various giant largest colonies of different species of gulls – silver, black-headed gull (which is included in the Russian Red Book), lake, several species of terns all biodiversity affects even experienced ornithologists and researchers.
According to conservationists, 28 endangered species of mammals. More commonly known species – a wild ass, wild camel, sheep, mountain sheep Gobi Gobi bear (mazalay), black-tailed gazelle and ibex; others include otters, wolves, antelopes and marmots. There are 59 species of endangered birds, including many species of hawk, falcon, buzzard, eagles and owls. Despite the Mongol belief that this is a failure to kill the eagle, several species of eagles endangered. Border Guard Service of Mongolia permanently stop attempts to remove the falcons from Mongolia to the Gulf states, where they are used for sports.
But there are positive aspects. Finally restored herd of wild horses. Takhi – known in Russia as the Przewalski horse – was virtually destroyed in the 1960s. It was successfully reintroduced in two national parks after an extensive breeding program abroad. In mountainous areas, are about 1,000 snow leopards. They are hunted for their skin (which is also part of some shamanic rituals).
Each year, the government sells licenses to hunt protected animals. In the year sold a license to shoot 300 wild goats, mountain sheep 40 (as a result of getting into the coffers of half a million dollars. This money will go to the recovery of wildlife populations in Mongolia).
RESERVES (national parks)
Mongolia is considered to be one of the few countries to preserve the purity and virginity of the environment. Since 1995, after the adoption of the Great Hural of Mongolia, the Law on Protected Natural Areas, the country has introduced a clear distinction between nature reserves, national parks, wildlife refuges and natural monuments. The creation of new protected areas, expand the area of pre-existing, approved by the boundaries of protected areas and to strengthen their security. Today in Mongolia there are 11 reserves, 7 national parks, 13 nature reserves. The largest reserve of Mongolia – Great Gobi (5300 thousand. Ha), is included in the international network of Biosphere Reserves, and is the largest in Asia. The oldest – Bogd Hanulsky (near Ulan Bator), organized in 1965, but environmental regime complied with in 1778, from the time when the mountain massif Bogd-Uul was declared sacred.
Today the Ministry of Nature and Environment manages the national park system with a tiny annual budget of about US $ 100,000 per year. It is understood that this amount is not enough, for the protection of all protected areas. Unfortunately, in many national parks and specially protected areas are not respected modes of protection. But if the Mongols turn a blind eye to the violation of the rules for its citizens, it has convicted a foreigner in violation of protected areas, you do not hesitate to tear off such a fine …
The Ministry of Nature and Environment, all protected areas are divided into four categories, which are in order of importance, are:
Strictly Protected Areas – very fragile very important area; hunting, logging and development is strictly prohibited and there is no established human influence.
National parks of historical and educational interest; fishing and grazing by nomadic people is allowed, and the park developed for ecotourism.
Reserves – Less important areas to protect rare species of flora and fauna and archaeological sites; some development is allowed within certain guidelines.
Natural & Historic Monuments – Important places of historical and cultural interest; development permitted within the guidelines.
In 2000 the government created five new national parks and one new reserve. 48 protected areas now make up more than 13% of the territory of Mongolia. The government aims to consolidate the status of protected natural land up to 30% of the country, making Mongolia the largest reserve of the planet.