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Markakol nature reserve and Markakol lake, Altay region, Kazakhstan.

Tour and Excursion to Markakol nature state reserve.

Markakolsky reserve is a pearl of East Kazakhstan. Picturesque mountain slopes, subalpine meadows, taiga forests with luminous sources and tundra wastelands represent the unique flora and fauna of this region, attract tourists. Let's take a virtual trip with the trails of this natural wonder.

History of Markakol nature natioanal park.

The reserve was created in 1976. At present, its area is 102.9 thousand hectares. At the same time, the land occupies 58 thousand hectares, and the water space - more than 44 thousand hectares.
The heart of these protected areas is Lake Markakol, located at an altitude of 1,447 m above sea level in a depression protected by two natural barriers — the Kuchum Range in the north and the Azutau Mountains from the south.
Markakol has an elongated oval shape. It stretches for 38 km, has a width of 19 km. The lake gives life to the Kaljir River.

Markakol lake in Markakol nature state reserve.

If you look at Markakol in clear sunny weather, then its surface becomes bright blue or deep blue, and in bad weather the waters become lead-gray. Thanks to the lake, this unique area preserves the unique flora and fauna of Kazakhstan.

Flora and fauna Markakol nature state reserve.

On the sloping slopes, in the meadows in the lowlands grows more than 1000 different species of plants. The mountainous part is covered with forests. Larch occupies 61% of the area. More than 20 tree species grow in the undergrowth, including:
• Siberian fir;
• aspen;
• wart birch;
• cedar, etc.
Here you can meet and shrubs:
• currant red and raspberry;
• gooseberry and barberry;
• Altai honeysuckle and brown wild rose.
Meadow-steppe and subalpine zones of the Markakolsky reserve are gratifying with herbs. Here grow sedges, South Siberian kopeechnik, Altai violet, raspberry leafy, white-flowered geranium.
In these areas, you can find plants listed in the Red Book of Kazakhstan. There are more than ten types of them, including:
• Siberian kandyk and plaun-baranets;
• Altai rhubarb and snowstripe;
• steppe peony and tulip miscellaneous;
• Alpine Difasiastrum and lily marvelous.

But around Markakol grows more than 30 species of aquatic plants, surprising for its beauty. If you walk along the shoreline of the lake, you can find thickets of canary, see two types of sedges - bubble and nozzle.
The shallow water zone of the lake is colored with a small and trifoliate duckweed, arrowhead floating. Here grow the horsetail, poisonous landmarks, broad-leaved cattail, bogger.
The vegetation of the Markakolsky Reserve is a forest and meadow pharmacy. Here are collected unique types of medicinal plants, including: golden, maral, and red root - Rhodiola rosea, safflower-shaped rapontikum and kopeechnik tea, respectively.
Herbs and lush vegetation make this place fertile for many species of animals and birds.

Symbol of the Markakol reserve.

The symbol of the Markakolsky Reserve is the uskuch fish. This is a unique species of predatory fish of the Lenkovo order living only in Lake Markakol and the rivers that flow into it.
Ukuch - a variety of Siberian Lenka and Umber, medium in size dark green fish almost black or silver-gray. At length, it reaches 55 cm, and can weigh up to 5 kg.
Markakolsky reserve is a paradise for the ornithologist. More than 239 species of birds live here. 140 species choose this territory for nesting.

Birds of Markakol reserve.

More than 15 species of birds inhabit the lake Markakol. Most often on the banks of the reservoir travelers will find crested blacken, gray duck and gogol. Here you can watch the diving teals and swimming mallards, big merganser and sviyazem.
If you're lucky, an amateur-ornithologist will see a redhead, black-necked, coot, pintail, black-necked grebe and shrew-nose on the shores of Markakol. In the marshland, which is adjacent to the lake, there are a gray crane and a yellow-headed wagtail, an Asian snipe and a corncrake.
Small-sized birds: quail and garden porridge, Dubrovnik - call in meadows. If you walk along the slopes where coniferous trees grow, you can observe the life of more than 60 species of birds, including:
• Chiffchaff;
• Little Tit;
• white-cap oatmeal;
• t-shirts;
• forest skate;
• dull light ash.
Most of them nest in this region.
To observe the behavior of wood grouse, hazel grouse, black grouse, black-throated thrushes, walk along the mountain taiga belt. Tundra and ptarmigan, crust, mountain horse find refuge in the tundra zone.
In the Markakolsky Reserve, a squad of birds is represented by Red Book individuals. Here lives 19 species of birds. Among them:
• white-tailed eagle;
• gray crane;
• black stork;
• golden eagle;
• ular.

Animals of Markakol reserve.

An endangered species of fish-eating predator, the Osprey, nests in the reserve. There are 10 pairs.
In the reserve about fifty species of mammals. Here is:
1. Ungulates: Siberian ibex, elk and roe deer, maral.
2. Fur predators: fox and Siberian lynx, sable and ermine, weasel and otter, American mink, wolverine and solonga. In addition, there are brown bear and wolf.
3. Proteins and hares: Altai squirrel, gray marmot, chipmunk, hare and Altai pika.
4. Insectivorous: Altai mole, water cooter, shrew.
5. Bats: water snare, Brandt snare, brown eared bat, northern leather jacket.
The rarest and unique animal of the Markakolsky Reserve is the snow leopard.
Due to the continental climate, when winters are cold and snowy, and spring and summer are warm and moderately humid, the territory of the Markakolsky Reserve is surprising in its richness of vegetation and originality of the animal world.