BAIGROUPKZ INVITES YOU TO BIRD WATCHING TOUR

Bird watching tour:
Tien Shan mountains and deserts of Kazakhstan

1650 USD per person | 15 days

Mountains and deserts of Kazakhstan

Botanical and ornithological tours in the deserts, steppes and lakes of Kazakhstan, including an eight-day hiking program in the indescribable Aksu Zhabagly nature reserve in the Tien Shan mountains.
Kazakhstan, lying at the heart of Central Asia on the Great Silk Road, is a massive country spanning 2,717,300 square kilometers from the Caspian Sea to Western China; an area the size of the whole of western Europe. Yet, with a population of just 18 million, mostly living in the cities, this is a land of vast open and unpeopled spaces. Great stone and sand deserts, and wide grassy steeps occupy the majority of the country, interspersed with such great inland lakes as Lake Balkhash, Aral and Caspian Sea. In dramatic contrast, along its south - eastern borders stand the mighty Tien Shan Mountains, the 1,000-mile spine of Central Asia and northern extension of the Himalaya which waters flower-filled alpine meadows, lush forests of Tien Shan Spruce and lowland Turanga, and feeds the great lakes and inland deltas to the north.

It is in these diverse habitats that you may hope to see such exciting avian specialties as Dalmatian Pelican, Saker Falcon, Himalayan Snowcock, Demoiselle Crane, Houbara Bustard, Ibisbill, Pallas's Sandgrouse, Eversmannn's Stock Dove, White-winged Woodpecker, Himalayan Rubythroat, Eversmann's and Guldenstads's Redstarts, Booted Warbler, Desert Warbler, Severtzov's Tit-warbler, Azure Tit, Turlestan Tit, Rose-colored Starling, Saxaul Sparrow, Red-mantled Rosefinch, White-winged Grosbeak.

TOUR PROGRAM

Day 1
Day 1
Arrival in Almaty in the early morning. Transfer to the "Otrar" hotel. Breakfast. A short walk in the park next to the hotel, observing the green chiffchaff and dim lightning. Morning drive east of Almaty to the Charyn River and Red Canyon. The western nightingale and the blue tit live here. On the way we will encounter fertile agricultural land; here the golden bee-eater, rock-roll, wheatear, black-faced shrike, and gall-bunting filled the wires along the road. We will also make a stop to study Bunting, white-capped bunting, pied wheatear and buzzard. We will find a huge number of pink starlings in gorgeous plumage, rapidly multiplying among rocks and stones not far from the Red Charyn Canyon. From a distance, we will explore the horizons in search of demoiselle crane and wheatear. If we are lucky, we will have the opportunity to see the saker falcon; although the population is declining due to the high demand for Middle Eastern falconers, these birds can usually be found in these areas. We are also likely to meet the first rodent mammals on our way, such as the great gerbil, the vast array of ground squirrels, and possibly the gazelle, which, unfortunately, is declining every year. The flora that we will meet is typical for the stony desert: hedgehog nanophyton, shrub bindweed, spiny red caragana, bindweed, various types of feather grass, caragana, wormwood and gooseberry and Michelson's endemic plant.
Day 2
Day 2
Before breakfast, observe breeding birds in the Charyn river valley and plants of the stone desert. Moving to the south, on the way, observing the Saker Falcon, Steppe Kestrel, Desert Wheat, Dancer Wheater, Horned Lark, Wheatear. The Charyn Canyon is a deep gorge that was formed over millennia by the mighty Charyn River, and is also home to bird species such as Mongolian finch, stone bunting and a huge number of birds of prey. After lunch, a short drive to the nearby Yellow Charyn Canyon in search of birds of prey, in particular the black stork. Return to the camp late in the evening. We can meet the tolai hare and the red fox, as well as small gophers, which will cautiously hide from the Buzzards living in these areas.
Day 3
Day 3
Return to Almaty. On the way back, a stop at a well with artesian water, where black-bellied sandgrouse and wheatear arrive at the watering hole. We will also wait for other birds, such as the dunned finch, but any other species of bird can fly into this desert area with the same probability. Passing through the Kokpek pass, we may visit a golden eagle, a dwarf eagle, possibly a burial ground, as well as a griffon vulture. Good habitat for study Bunting, white-capped bunting, pied wheatear and buzzard that breed on the slopes of the local hills. "Otrar" hotel in Almaty. Leisure. Overnight stay.
Day 4
Day 4
Drive northwest to the Taukum Desert. A fully equipped shore camp will give us the opportunity to explore the nearby Ili delta, which is home to species such as the white-winged woodpecker, the endangered brown pigeon, the blue tit and the Bukhara tit. By the way, Bustard beauty nests right next to our camp! Songs of the two-spotted lark and gray lark can be heard overhead, while flocks of black-bellied sandgrouse fly in the morning along their usual route to and from the watering hole at our camp. Caspian and large-billed plovers are also observed in this area. On the way to the desert, we stop at Lake Sarbulak on the Kurty River, where thousands of pink starlings breed among the rocks on the lake shore. The lake itself is a huge body of water that attracts both American White and Dalmatian Pelicans. It is also home to the great egret, fire and huge numbers of the more common Eurasian wild duck. Other interesting species: white-tailed eagle, marsh harrier, gull, black-headed gull, gull-billed, black marsh, barnacle marsh terns. In addition, there is a huge number of migratory birds such as small sandpiper.
Day 5
Day 5
Drive northwest to the Taukum Desert. A fully equipped shore camp will give us the opportunity to explore the nearby Ili delta, which is home to species such as the white-winged woodpecker, the endangered brown pigeon, the blue tit and the Bukhara tit. By the way, Bustard beauty nests right next to our camp! Songs of the two-spotted lark and gray lark can be heard overhead, while flocks of black-bellied sandgrouse fly in the morning along their usual route to and from the watering hole at our camp. Caspian and large-billed plovers are also observed in this area. On the way to the desert, we stop at Lake Sarbulak on the Kurty River, where thousands of pink starlings breed among the rocks on the lake shore. The lake itself is a huge body of water that attracts both American White and Dalmatian Pelicans. It is also home to the great egret, fire and huge numbers of the more common Eurasian wild duck. Other interesting species: white-tailed eagle, marsh harrier, gull, black-headed gull, gull-billed, black marsh, barnacle marsh terns. In addition, there is a huge number of migratory birds such as small sandpiper.
Day 6
Day 6
Night train to Almaty. In the evening we will drive to the station to catch our train to Almaty.
Day 7-11
Day 7-11
Arrival by train in the morning, drive to the Aksu Zhabagly reserve. Accommodation in a guest house. This travel interval can be considered a reward for botanists, since Aksu Zhabagly is a botanical paradise where about 1,400 species of various plants grow, most of which are rare or endemic to the western Tien Shan. Huge variety of primroses, tulips and saxifrage. Endemic trees such as birch and poplar have also taken root here. More than twenty species of onion bloom at different heights this season and create amazing carpets of blue, red and pink flowers in the meadows. Also, more than ten species of astragalus, five species of ferula sprout, tulips bloom (Kaufman's tulip, false-haired tulip), Ungernia victoris, Tatar iksiolirion and other endemic species such as skullcap, Talas Oxytropis, Queen Olga's snowdrop, Severtsov's plant and decorative Morina persica. Quail shrieks in the low mountains, and on the slopes of the hill there are mountain and gray warblers, black-faced shrike and great turtledove breed in the steppe. Slightly higher inhabits the blue-fronted redstart, juniper grosbeak and Himalayan snowcock, but it is best to watch them at the end of the tour, in the mountains near Almaty. Birds of prey are much more common, for example: American black vulture, griffon vulture, bearded vulture and golden eagle. From the windows of the guest house you can see a hobby, a black kite and even a saker falcon. Species such as little bustard, meadow harrier, Collared Pratincole and demoiselle crane nest and actively reproduce in one of the nearby lakes. The Aksu gorge surprises with its variety of plant species and indescribable landscapes, while the population of the red-necked tit, bunting, white-capped bunting also increases. The black-headed goldfinch, which is considered to be a subspecies of the gray-headed goldfinch, is considered by some Kazakh ornithologists to be a separate species. After few minutes' drive from the low-lying forest, you can see how the desert mocking, warbler, whitewater, paradise flycatcher can be bred. A stop along the way will give us the opportunity to observe the snake-eater and vulture, as well as the owl's nests.
Day 11
Day 11
Transfer from Aksu Zhabagly. Night train to Almaty.
Day 12-14
Day 12-14
Arrival to Almaty. We will climb higher to the fir forest and meadows of the Tien Shan. Two nights at the Observatory. The rocky peaks and peaks above the meadows are the nesting sites of the Himalayan snowcock, which marks its territory with a loud cry. At the foot of the blooming marble valley is the Bolshoi Almaty Lake - a reservoir above the dam, the shores of which are an excellent breeding ground for the sticklebacks. This area is a paradise for botanists. The slopes of the low mountains are covered with thickets of honeysuckle, dog-rose and cotoneaster, in addition, such a rare and endemic curl Mushketov grows here. Even higher - the Sivers apple tree and the common apricot, a huge number of blooming cyanosis, the fighter of the white-tongued, the mountaineer and the powerful Eremurus robustus. The beautiful forests of the candle-like Tien Shan fir are a real home for the creeping Goodyera and the endemic saffron jaundice, and the variety of species of wrestler, geranium, primrose, violet and catchment is simply amazing. Near the river, there is a Cortusa, parnassia glauca and a thorns. A little higher, in the subalpine zone, a tall juniper grows, which is characteristic of these places. The flowers here are simply amazing, among them are large Trollius (Altai Trollius and Siberian Trollius), large-flowered snakehead, elongated anemone, bear root, Primula algida and many others. The Alpine belt is another find with its Sibbaldia tetrandra, bright red rhodiola, pyrethrum, Arnebia, Isopyrum with large-flowered and innumerable astragalus, Pedicularis, Potentilla, gentian and acuminous. It is also home to a large number of birds: the pale and black-throated accentor, black-breasted ruby-necks, dull warbler, gray-bellied warbler, painted titmouse, juniper lentils and juniper gannets. Great turtledove, blue-colored redstart and Eversman's redstart, falcon, crossbill and king finch live and breed in the fir forests of the Tien Shan. After lunch of the 14th day, return to Almaty.
Day 15
Day 15
Departure
THE TOUR PAYMENT INCLUDES:
  • Invitation and visa support
  • Meeting at the airport and seeing off to the airport
  • All transfers
  • Bird watcher
  • Translation services
  • Employee services
  • Accommodation at the Almaty hotel at the beginning and at the end of the tour
  • Excursions around the city of Almaty
  • Registration with the local migration police
  • Employee insurance
  • Skips
  • Environmental contributions
  • Hiking double tent on the way (height - 2.15m)
  • Field bed and mattresses
  • Three meals a day (hot breakfast and dinner, lunch boxes for lunch)
  • Tent with table and chairs
  • Restaurant tent
  • Shower tent and toilet tent
  • Garbage removal
  • First aid
  • First aid kit
  • Radio communication with the office in Almaty
  • Ticket confirmation
THE TOUR PAYMENT DOES NOT INCLUDE:
  • Rescue work (you must have a copy of your insurance policy)
  • Change of the date of departure from Almaty by international airlines
  • Extra meals and extra night at the hotel.
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Contacts
+77473511779
+77273177557
info@baigroupkz.com
3-Gradocomplex street, block-166, district Shapagat, Almaty The Republic of Kazakhstan
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