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Tajikistan is a mountainous, landlocked country with rich landscape, wildlife and culture. Its biological richness is equivalent to nearby countries 20 times its size, with a wonderfully diverse array of fauna and flora, including a globally significant population of snow leopard. The country is recognized as a part of the ‘Mountains of Central Asia’ Biodiversity Hotspot.
However its natural heritage is under severe threat from habitat fragmentation and degradation. 90 per cent of the forests have disappeared in the past 100 years, causing massive soil erosion and increased risk of landslides.
Tajikistan is the poorest of the countries in the region. Following the collapse of the Soviet Union, it experienced a major reversal in economic and social development. Shortly after independence the country descended into a five-year civil war. More than half of the population lives below the poverty line. Its many economic and social challenges are combined with enormous environmental problems.
Fauna & Flora International (FFI) is taking action to help save what remains of the country’s rich natural heritage, working with local partners to implement a range of initiatives.
Tajikistan is a mountainous country with a rich landscape, wildlife and culture. Its biological richness is equivalent to Kazakhstan, a country 20 times its size. However its natural heritage is under severe threat from habitat fragmentation and degradation, soil erosion and unsustainable natural resource use. FFI is working to improve conservation impact in Tajikistan by increasing the capacity of current and future conservation professionals. We have established a national conservation training programme, working with a network of experts across the country to train hundreds of National Park staff and other practitioners, and promoting applied conservation research.
Zorkul Lake may sound like a place in a science fiction novel, but it is in fact a breathtaking lake in Tajikistan’s Pamir Mountains. The 88,000-hectare Zorkul Nature Reserve is home to snow leopards, wolves and Marco Polo sheep, as well as Tajikistan’s largest population of bar-headed goose, which migrate to the lake across the Himalayas from India and Nepal each year.
FFI is helping the reserve staff to develop both the motivation and the basic skills needed to manage the reserve. We are using the bar-headed goose as a local flagship species for the conservation of the wider Pamir mountain ecosystem.
Childukhtaron Forest has a wonderful mixture of walnut, apple, cherry, mulberry and juniper trees, making it globally important for biodiversity but also vital to local people’s survival. FFI is working with the Forestry Department, local communities and national NGOs to raise awareness and improve the forest management by strengthening the capacity of key-stakeholders to protect this threatened ecosystem. In particular, we are helping to build the skills of our Tajik partner organisation Zan va Zamin to provide training, mentoring and support in delivering small scale conservation initiatives in highly diverse forest habitats.
Through our National Conservation Training Program, with funding from DEFRA’s Darwin Initiative, Fauna & Flora International is investing in the future, and mentoring five postgraduate students to complete their research in important conservation issues. The students are all pursuing Masters Degrees, within the institutes affiliated with the Tajik National Academy of Sciences. Faridun Rahimov Conservation status of pheasant populations in Tajikistan Faridun is studying pheasants in Tajikistan, where they are on the very edge of their range. In addition, he…Read more
Fauna & Flora International (FFI) is one of the few international conservation NGOs operating in Tajikistan. Bordering Afghanistan, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan and China, Tajikistan is recognised as a key part of the ‘Mountains of Central Asia’ Biodiversity Hotspot. The mountains of Tajikistan cover 93 per cent of its land area and harbour an astonishing number of plant and animal species, including the Marco Polo sheep, endangered snow leopard and Siberian ibex. Its breathtaking landscapes include snowcapped peaks and wild fruit and…Read more