Designated on 18 May 2007 in Almaty, Kazakhstan
Coordinates: 51032′N; 64026′E
Country: Kazakhstan
Area: 191,381 ha

Overview. Naurzum Lake System is a natural wetland comprised of large and small lakes scattered in the steppe zone of Northern Kazakhstan. It is system with seasonally changing water levels, comprising, according to hydro-chemical water composition, a variety number of water bodies – from fresh water lakes to bitter-salt ones.

Importance for the Siberian Crane. It is the most important stop over for Siberian Cranes of the Western/Central flyway within Kazakhstan. Siberian Cranes regularly stop over at this territory both in the spring and autumn migration period. In the spring Siberian Cranes may rest at the site for up to one month.

Importance for other waterbirds. The site is a breeding area for two other crane species: Eurasian and Demoiselle Cranes. It is also a stop-over site for migratory Eurasian Cranes, and in some years summer groups of molting birds were recorded. In autumn pre-migratory congregations of Eurasian Cranes totaled up to three thousand birds and up to 132 Demoiselle Cranes.
During migration the Naurzum Lake System supports a great number of waterfowl, including 40,000 to 237,000 ducks and coots. Depending on water levels, the number of migrating geese during the period 1966-2005 fluctuated from 20,000 to 500,000. The site regularly supports more than 7% of the Black Sea-Caspian Sea population of Whooper Swans; not less than 5% of the Siberian-Caspian population of Bewick’s Swans; up to 2.5% of the Western population of Lesser White-fronted Geese; up to 7% of the population of Red-breasted Geese; and more than 1% of the Dalmatian and White Pelicans’ populations of Southwest and South Asia.

Map of Naurzum Lake System [PDF 1,297 KB]

Sightings of the Siberian Crane in Naurzum Lake System [PDF 24 KB]

List of Rare and Threatened Species of International Importance and Globally Significant Migratory Waterbird Species Occurring at Naurzum Lake System, Kazakhstan [PDF 38 KB]

WCASN Site Information Sheet. Part I [PDF 202 KB]

Information Sheet of Ramsar Wetlands [PDF 1,898 KB]

Sheet of Important Bird Area Birdlife International of Naurzum State Nature Reserve

World Heritage Site of Saryarka – Steppe and Lakes of Northern Kazakhstan

World Protected Areas Database

WCASN Factsheet of Naurzum Lake System [PDF 281 KB]