Mongolia Flora and Fauna

Mongolia is the region of convergence and co-existence of flora which originates both from the Great Siberian Taiga and from the Central Asian Steppe and Desert. 975 species of flowering plant out of the total 3,000 registered species are used for traditional medicine of Mongolia. Most of the plants are wild shrubs and bushes adapted to the extreme weather conditions. The flowers have a wide range of colors and shapes. However most of the flowers are smaller in size because of the small amounts of precipitation of rain in this country.

There are about 150 endemic vascular and lower plants such as Stipa mongolorum, Adonis mongolica, Betula mongolica, Atraphaxis bracteata, Calligonum gobicum, Nanophyton mongolicum, Gymnocarpus przewalskii, Silene mongolica, Potaninia mongolica, Chesneya mongolica, Astragalus gobicus, Oxytropis ulzii-chutagii and Armisia gobica. The Khangai, Gobi-Altai and Mongolian Altai regions have the most endemic species.

Leontopodium, commonly known as Edelweiss is a native plant of the Asian steppes growing at altitudes of 1700 m above the sea level. The plant is well adapted to climatic extremes due to its deep fibrous routes and the felt like covering of its leaves which protect it from drought, strong winds, and potentially damaging sun. The flower with white petals arranged in star like shape has medicinal value.

The most commonly found flower plant in Mongolia is Caryopteris, small shrubs with white or blue flowers that grow up to 4 meters. The aromatic leaves grow opposite to each other and when the flowers are blue they are often known by the name Blue Mist. These plants are used for making perfumes.

With the lowest human population density of any country on earth, and with one of the highest proportions of land area classified as protected, Mongolia is a haven where plants and animals can thrive. Locally-managed nature reserves such as Gun Galuut, just an hour outside of Ulaanbaatar, boast species diversity unrivaled by many of the world's most leg­endary national parks. Here, majestic mammals like Argali sheep and gray wolf coexist with herding families who have committed to protecting these threatened species through conservation and sustainable management. Further north, in Khuvsgul National Park, rangers and tour companies are joining forces to protect the rich aquatic diversity found in the park's lakes and rivers through eco-tourism initiatives centered on responsible fishing.

From border to bor­der, Mongolia is a na­tion that values wildlife and cherishes na­ture. Any visit to the countryside promises an opportunity to spot animals in their natural habitat, and enjoy the bounty of Mongolia's flora and fauna. There are 75 species of fish belonging to 36 genera and 11 families living in Mongo­lian rivers and lakes of with 10 species are of 5families in the Enclosed Basin of Central Asia, 22 species of 11 families in the Arctic basin and 43 species of 11 families in the Pa­cific Ocean. The mammals living in Mongolia include: 14 species are animal feeding on insects, 12 species are with wings, 4species of rats, 3 species of hares, 65 spe­cies of rodents, 22 species of carnivorous animals and 14 species of hoofed animals. Altogether, 35mammal species have been registered in Mongolian Red Data Book.

Many species of Mammals inhabit in the Gun-Galuut Nature Reserve. Threat level of Gun-Galuut species are: Critically: Siberian White Crane, Endangered: Wild Mountain Sheep and Swan Goose, Vulnerable: White-Naped Crane, Great Bustard, Relict Gull, Lesser Kestrel, nearly threatened: Cinereous Vulture and White-Tailed Eagle, Least Con­cern: Grey Wolf and Corsica Fox. Argali mountain wild sheep /Ovis Am­mon/. There are over 100 Argalis live in the Nature Reserve currently. The first Ar­gali came to the area in 1980s, but now it is known exactly where they came from. Argali live in beautiful Mt. Baits and Berkh.

Also Grey Wolf /Canus Lupus/ live here, particularly at Mt Baits and Berkh. They spend the day laying in woody and bushy ravines of the mountains and hunting for domestic animals and sometimes the Argali herds at nights. Fox /Vulpes vulpes/, Steppe fox /Vulpes corsac/, Manul cat /feles manul/, Badger /meles meles/ and Lynx /Lynx lynx/ are also seen here during daytime. Mon­golian Marmot /Marmote Sibirica/ occured here for a few years ago, though, connecting to illegal hunting now this animal is facing extinction. The area is rich in small rodents such as Brown Hare /Lepus tolai/, mice etc., White gazelles /Procapra gutturosa/ often come from the east to this area.

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