Kurgaljinski Reserve, Northern Kazakhstan

Kazakhstan natureThe Kurgaljinski State Reserve is situated in 160 km to the north-east of Astana. It is in the Tengiz-Kurgaljinski Lowland, on the joint of steppe and semi-desert zones.

The total area of the reserve is 237100 hа. On its territory there are no large trees, this is domain of low grass and bush typical for the steppe area. The Kurgaljinski lakes are rich in fish, including food species. They are golden and argentine crucians, ides, pikes, tenches, perches, roaches. Lake Tengiz (which stands for a ‘sea' in Kazakh) is the largest in the reserve.

It is made unique by the pink flamingoes, nesting on the islands of the ancient lake. Here is the world's utmost northern colony of these wonderful birds. They lived here even in the Palaeocene Period, when all the Tengiz-Kurgaljinski Cavity was covered with the Tetis Sea.

On the territory of the Kurgaljinski Reserve a lucky tourist can meet a black stork and a screaming swan. Wild pigs hide in the cane dens. Occasionally the reserved territory is visited by the wood inhabitants - lynx, roe deer and elk.