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KG-Ichthyologist Powered By Docstoc

  of the Ichthyology Expert, Candidate of Biological Science

               Kustareva Lidia Alexandrovna


  (Species Composition of Fish, Habitats, Biology, Ecology)

                         Bishkek 2008

Goals and Targets
Certain goals and targets were set out before the Expert-Ichthyologist by the management of the
“Pamir-Alai Transborder Conservation Area” Project (PATCA). Conduction of ichthyologic
investigations in Alai valley under PATCA Project pursued a goal of collection and
replenishment of information on the condition of ichthyofauna in ponds of this region, revelation
of peculiarities of fish species distribution in breakdown by types of ponds, status of identified
species (endemics, rare, mass, fishery, etc.). This activity is connected with solution of the
matter related to creation of Pamir-Alai Transborder Conservation Area.

The following matters were included into the targets of the investigations:
- review of available publications on ichthyofauna of Alai valley (Tien-Shan Kyrgyzstan,
Tadjikistan); review of ichthyofauna of Pamir mountainous water bodies on trans-border areas
with Kyrgyzstan;
 - conduction of field researches for collection of data on the status of Alai valley water bodies
and their classification;
 - collection of fish from Alai valley water bodies on Kyrgyzstan territory;
 - cameral treatment of collected species;
 - identification of collected organisms species;
 - quantitative correlation, age and sex composition of fish;
 - indicator significance of identified species;
 - conservation status of separate sites of the area.

Field investigations period - the second half of July – first half of August, when fish migrations
to spawning or migration of young fish down from the nursery grounds take place. It is also
necessary to take fish during the period of spring and autumn low water season (March-April,
September-October).We have collected materials on fish of Alai valley ponds in the second half
of July and beginning of August 2007.

Cameral Treatment Targets:
1) preparation of illustrated description of fish on PATCA territory;
2) identification of endemics, rare, protected or endangered species;
3) development of recommendations on conservation of ichthyofauna;
4) recommendations adapted for use by PATCA staff on the following monitoring of the state
and conservation of the species diversity of ichthyofauna.

                                    Fish of PATCA Ponds
Data on fish and other hydrobionts contain the following information:
   - description of water bodies (rivers, lakes, etc.);
   - coordinates of locations where fish was taken;
   - quantity of identified species of fish;
   - age and sex characteristic of fished out samples;
   - status of fish inhabiting on PATCA territory (fishery, non-fishery, rare, endemic,
   - reasons for deterioration of ichthyofauna condition on PATCA territory.

At implementation of the set out targets the following methods were applied:
а) analysis of available data on fish and other hydrobionts of PATCA area based on literature
b) collection of material on ichthyofauna under field conditions according to the method of V.I.
Zhadin (1961);

c) cameral treatment of collected material according to method of I.F. Pravdin (1966), V.I.
Zhadin (1961) and according to the series of key determinants on fish indicated in a list of
d) state of ponds depicted by means of photographic survey.

       Section 1. Background of Alai Valley Ichthyofauna Study
First data on fish of Pamir and Tien-Shan appeared at the end of the XIX (Severtsov, 1883) and
at the very beginning of the XX cent. (Nikolsky, 1901; Berg, 1902, 1905). They indicated
availability of a small number of fish species in high mountainous water ponds, which were
adapted for habitat under their extreme conditions. Later a species composition of fish in water
ponds of Alai valley was investigated by Nikolsky G.V. (1938), Turdakov F.A. (1952, 1963),
Pivnev I.A. (1990). In Tadjikistan information on fish of mountainous ponds, for example,
Yashil-Kul lake, are indicated in the work of Bulgakov T.P. and Sokurov V.B. (1936). Starting
from the middle of the XX cent. a special attention of researchers was paid to the study of
biology of the most vivid representative of Tien-Shan and Pamir ichthyofauna – Alai trout
(Shaposhnikova, 1950, 1950а; Turdakov, 1952; Sokurov, 1958; Konurbaev А.О., 1960;
Amanov, Khakimova,1976; Amirkulov, 1983; Imanov, 1976). Owing to works of Allamuratov
B. (1967), Grischenko E.V. (1976, 1978), Polischuk V.V. (1983), Savvaitova К.А. et al.(1988,
1990) there were studied biological peculiarities of false osman reproduction, its form-building
and structure, morphological peculiarities of Amudaria trout in connection with clarification of
systematic position. Information on systematic position of Pamir and Alai valley fish within
Kyrgyzstan is reflected in a whole series of works of prominent ichthyologists of the former
Central Asia (Baimbetov, Timirkhanov, 1999; Kamilov, 1964; Kustareva, Lemzina, 1997;
Lindberg, Gerd, 1972; Mirabdullaev, Mirzaev, Khegai, 2002; Yudkin, 1962). There were also
developed matters of fish-farming use of Pamir and Tien-Shan water ponds (Goncharov, 1964;
Grischenko, 1976; Dryagin, 1966; Maksunov, 1976; Shirokov, 1982).

       Section 2. Results of Own Investigations
Characteristic of Investigation Sites
Different water ponds of Alai valley were investigated within the Kyrgyz Republic in July-
August 2007 (Table 1).
                 Stations of Ichthyological Samples Selection in Alai Valley
                                                                                    Table 1
   Date, place      Description of       Geographic           Weather           Water
                         pond            coordinates         conditions      temperature
   20.07.2007                          Н – 2660
 Daroot-Korgon, Ichkesu r. (Darsu Е - 72 02 10            Cloudy 40%            +9
   Regional        gorge)              N - 39 28 20
   21.07.2007         Tulpar-Kol       Н – 3600           Cloudy 90%,
  Sary-Mogol       Lake                Е -72 52 55         Temporary            + 16
                                       N -39 40 42        rains
   21.07.2007      Kyzyl-turup r.      Н –3420
   Sary-Mogol                          Е –72 55 00           Rain               + 14
                                       N -39 32 15
   22.07.2007      Kalta-bulak         Н -3000
 Basin of East     Right tributary of Е –73 49 45
 Kyzylsu r.        Koksu r.            N -39 38 50           Rain               + 10

   23.07.2007                          Н -2990
    Basin of       Left tributary of   Е –73 50 20         Cloudy 70%              +9
 East Kyzylsu r.   Nura r.             N -39 37 20
  23.07.2007      Bogginess at         Н –2910
   Basin of       confluence of        Е –73 51 53
East Kyzylsu r.   Nura r. with the     N -39 37 20      Rain          + 15
                  right tributary of
                  Karachai r.
  23.07.2007                           Н -2910
   Basin of       Left tributary of    Е –73 51 53      Rain          + 12
East Kyzylsu r.   Nura r.              N -39 38 38
  23.07.2007                           Н -2860
   Basin of       Koksu r., right      Е –73 48 20
East Kyzylsu r.   tributary of         N -39 40 30    Rain, wind      + 14
                  Kyzylsu r.
   24.07.2007     Kashkasu r.,         Н – 3210
Karakendik        right                Е –73 27 35   Cloudy 50%,      + 17
stow              tributary of         N -39 41 55       wind
                  West Kyzylsu r.
  24.07.2007      Sarymogol r.         Н –2990       Cloudy 40%.
Sary-Mogol v.      3 km above the      Е –72 52 55     wind           + 17
                  village              N -39 40 42
 26.07.2007       Koksu r., right      Н –3010       Variable
West part of      tributary of         Е –71 49 55   weather, rain,    + 10
Alai valley       West Kyzylsu r.      N -39 40 20   sun

 26.07.2007        Spring on left      Н- 3050
West part of      bank of Koksu r.     Е–?              Rain           + 18
Alai valley                            N-?

Description of Investigated Ponds Environment
Alai valley is a depression elongated from the east to the west from elevation 3,536 m in the east
up to 2,240 m in the west. A length of the valley is 150 km, a width is from 8 to 25 km, an area is
1,700 sq. km. Alai valley, north slopes of Chonalai range and a part of the southern slope of Alai
range, a basin of East Kyzylsu river are included into North Pamir geographic province in the
form of a strip with 200 km in length and up to 50 and more km in width. The area of its territory
is 6,640 sq. km. The eastern part of the valley, where a discharge of the East Kyzylsu river is
formed, carries a name of Nura-Koksu valley, the western part – Koksu-Kyzylsu. A climate of
the eastern part is more severe in comparison with the western part. Here a cold period lasts
during 7 months, in the west – 5 months.
 A flat bottom of the valley is formed by alluvial-proluvial sediments, there are morainic hills
and ridges in the middle part. Irrigated lands prevail in the western part along Kyzyl-Su river and
in the valley of Kok-su river.
Ponds of Alai valley are represented by a branched river network, mountain lakes, temporary
water reservoirs. A river network is represented by flows forming a westward discharge (a basin
of Amudaria river) and an eastward discharge (a basin of Tarim river). A small number of rives
in the east part of the valley flow to East Kyzylsu river (Djar), which flows to China (a basin of
Tarim river). A major part of the water discharge from Alai and Zaalai ranges fill in an
extensive flood plain of West Kyzylsu river, which after confluence with Muksu river on
Tadjikistan territory carries a name – Surkhob river, and then – Vakhsh.
In the head reaches of the rivers, bed slopes amount to 100%, decreasing at outlet to szyrts and
high mountainous depressions up to 10%. At that, river beds start to “wander” in flood plains,
which are formed by loose sediments.
East Kyzylsu River. A river length does not exceed 31 km. It carries its water to China, but it
does not reach Tarim river (Domanitsky et al, 1971).
West Kyzylsu River has 235 km in length and after confluence of Muksu river on Tadjikistan
territory it carries a name Surkhob and then – Vakhsh (Domanitsky et al, 1971).
Both rivers are glacier-snow fed with an admixture of atmospheric precipitation and
underground water. Melt water makes up 80% of the total flow, underground water - 10-20%,
rain precipitation – 2-3%.
Floods are observed in spring and summer. Rivers of Alai valley are characterized by lengthy
high water during the warm period of the year (June-August). A low-water season is usually
from October to March.
Many rivers carry a name “Kyzylsu” (red) due to particles of scoured rocks contained in water –
slates, limestone, gypsum and prevailing red sandstones. Such rivers as East and West Kyzylsu,
Nura rivers have a permanent red colour during the warm period of the year. Other rivers can
acquire red colour during the rainy periods. A specificity of mountainous rivers is that they have
a high content of mineral suspended matters, which form water turbidity. Turbidity is a weight
content of solid particles in the unit of water volume – from 10 to 2,000 g/m³. According to the
chemical composition water of Alai valley rivers is attributed to hydro-carbonate and hydro-
carbonate-calciferous rivers with mineralization from 300 to 500 mg/l.
 Riverheads of East Kyzylsu river are Nura and East Koksu rivers and their multiple tributaries.
Riverheads of East Kyzylsu river are Nura and East Koksu rivers and their numerous tributaries.
Ailama, Karakindik, Korumdu, Cholok-teke, etc. are sources of West Kyzylsu river.
River water is used predominantly for irrigation purposes and for water supply of populated
settlements, especially in the western part.
A temperature regime of a majority of rivers is low (during summer period temperature of water
varies from +10 to +15ºC), water is saturated with solid suspended particles dissolved by
oxygen. River beds are formed by stones, coarse and fine pebbles, coarse sand. Many river
sections have a rock lined bottom, during the flood period rocks are very movable, they are
rolled over by fast flow, which prevents their fouling with algae and colonization by
invertebrate, i.e. prevents formation of the fodder base for fish. Ponds of mountainous areas, as a

rule, have insignificant sedimentations, which stipulate a poor development of life, less
qualitative variety of fauna and insignificant number of relicts and endemics.
Tulpar-Kol Lake. It is situated on the slope of Chonalai range. It is possible to get there
starting from Sarymogol village. There is a camp for tourists on its bank. We did not take fish in
the lake, as it is necessary to have a boat and stake nets for this purpose. But another reason for
that is as follows: there is a popular belief among local population about this lake as on the “holy
lake”, where one must not take fish and swim. However, they themselves do assure that fish is
available in the lake. This matter requires additional work. May be a false osman inhabits there,
which is an inhabitant of practically all lakes situated on Tadjikistan transbordering with
Kyrgyzstan territory. But at present we found out 4 species of fish in ponds of the Kyrgyz part of
Alai valley. The fifth species – Turkestan bullhead – is indicated in Atlas of the Kyrgyz SSR
(1985), but none of literature sources refers to it.

Description of Fish of Alai Valley and Contiguous Areas of Mountain Pamir
The analysis of own field investigations and literature sources showed poorness of ichthyofauna
of ponds both in Alai valley and Pamir mountain ponds.
A complex of fish inhabits here, which is adapted to severe extreme conditions of mountains and
peculiarities of the ponds hydrological regime.
A taxonomic composition of fish of the investigated region is not rich and is represented by 4
families, 6 orders and 7 species, which are components of the Asian Upland Complex.

Family Salmonidae .
Genus Salmo Linnaeus
Species Salmo trutta oxianus Kessler (S. trutta aralensis morpha fario Berg)
Russian name – Amudaria trout ( Nikolsky G., 1938; Turdakov, 1963; Pivnev, 1990); Turkestan
salmon (А.М.Nikolsky, 1902); trout (Berg, 1905).
Tadjik name - gulbalygy.
Some authors ( Goncharov, 1964; Mirabdullaev et el., 2002 ) are of the opinion that Amudaria
trout is a river form of Aral salmon Salmo trutta aralensis ( Dryagin, 1966). Nikolsky G.V.
(1938) considered that this trout was a sub-species of bulltrout Salmo trutta.
A species from Alai valley is known yet from the times of Severtsov (1883), for the first time
was described as a species from Bamian r., a tributary of Amudaria river. F.A. Turdakov (1963)
observed it in West Kyzylsu river only at Daroot-Korgon, as well as in Varzob, Muksu rivers,
i.e. in West Pamir. According to his opinion, the trout is a typical inhabitant of water ponds of
West Pamir. We have fished out one sample of young trout, which has a name of a “parr” due to
its very bright coloration (Yudkin, 1962) in the eastern tributary of Kyzylsu river – West
Kashkasu r. (Karakindik stow). There are 7-13 dark fascias on the sides of trout of such age,
between which red spots are arranged according to a strict order. The same spots are available on
dorsal and tail fins as well (Attachment, photo). Bright coloration of Amudaria trout is preserved
at later age (Pivnev, 1990).
A biology of Amudaria trout is still poorly studied. It is known that it inhabits in upper reaches
of rivers flowing to Amudaria from West Pamir (Turdakov, 1963). But now it is possible to state
with assurance that Amudaria trout inhabits in all “pure” flows of Alai valley. As all other trout,
this species selects for spawning and feeding pure mountainous ponds and uses rivers with the
increased turbidity only for passing to spawning and feeding grounds.
Specimens of the indicated species do not reach large size – from 23.3 cm to 43.3 cm (Nikolsky,
1938; Berg, 1905; Shaposhnikova, 1950; Turdakov, 1963; Mirabdullaev et el., 2002).
Amudaria trout, as all representatives of this order, is fed by larvae of insects (dayflies, stone
flies, caddis flies, chironomids and other dipterans), crustaceans and other components of aquatic
fauna, sufficiently numerous in river flows of Alai valley and Pamir. It is significant as an object
for amateur fishing in Kyrgyzstan. It was introduced to Karadaria and Akbura rivers, where it
was successfully acclimatized and colonized from these places to the basin of Sardiaria river.

The construction of irrigation projects, irrigation network and commercial fishing in the middle
and tail sections of Amudaria river resulted in the fact that this species due to its small number
was introduced into the Red Lists of Tadjikistan and Uzbekistan.

Family Cyprinidae – carp-like fish
Genus Schizothorax Heckel
Species Schizothorax intermedius McClelland ( sometimes Schizothorax itermidia).
Russian name – common marinka; Kyrgyz name – sazan; Tadjik name – shirmokhi.
From early literature sources it is known under different names, but it received its final name in
works of L.S. Berg (1949). For the first time it was found in Ind and Gilmend rivers. It is a
widely spread species, especially in mountainous systems of Pamir and Tien-Shan. F.A.
Turdakov (1963) recorded its presence in the system of West Kyzylsu river downstream Daroot-
Korgon, in all rivers flowing from the north slope of Alai range. However, it does not move to
high mountainous areas, as it is more thermophilic than trout, osman and stone-loach.
A peculiar feature of marinka is changing of coloration depending on water turbidity in the pond.
In such turbid rivers as Kyzylsu river fish has a dark back and light-silvery sides. In ponds with
pure transparent water a back is dark-brown, sides are bright-orange and a belly is yellow.
Young specimens have brown spots on sides.
A fish size can achieve 60 cm, especially lake specimens. A species has a commercial
Common marinka is widely spread in other river basins of Kyrgyzstan.
Spawning of marinka lasts almost the whole summer. It is fed with larvae of dayflies, stone flies,
caddis flies. Larvae of fish (stone-loaches) are often met in the bolus.
In Tadjikistan common marinka inhabits in all rivers flowing from the north slope of Alai and
Turkestan ranges.

Genus Diptychus Steindachner
Species Diptychus sewerzowi Kessler, 1872
Russian name – sparce scaly osman, osman of Severtsov. Local population often call it trout,
mountainous trout.
This species was for the first time discovered and described based on osman fished out from
Aksai river, which is included in to the system of Tarim river.
We have fished out several samples of fish of this species both in tributaries of East Kyzylsu
river and in tributaries of West Kyzylsu river as well. Osmans of Severtsov are distinguished
from other scaly osmans by the body coloration. The upper part of the head and a back is dark,
small scales on this background form a spotty pearly pattern. There is a wide light strip below
the light side line along the body, which is limited by a dark not wide strip going from the base
of pectoral and ventral fins (Attachment, photo). Sex dimorphism is expressed in the body
A size of space scaly osman is not large, especially in mountainous sections of rivers – up to 25
 Many fauna researchers of Kyrgyzstan and Central Asia point out that space scaly osman
inhabits in water ponds of the whole basin of Tarim, is known in basins of Naryn, Chu,
Amudaria rivers. Osman of Severtsov is numerous also in the so-called “szyrt” zone of Tien-San,
where it is met everywhere jointly with Nemacheilus stoliczkai.
Osman of Severtsov is deemed to be the most slow-growing species out of all osmans, females
aged 6 years only reach a sexual maturity at the length of the body equal to 17 cm, and males
from water courses are distinguished by their dwarfness.
Osman of Severtsov prevails in the highest mountainous sections of rivers (jointly with
N.stoliczkai ), but they do not form a large number.
In ponds with cold water and freezing in winter this species is a landscape one.

According to the feeding type Osman of Severtsov is attributed to the polyphages – it eats as
animals both animal and vegetation components.

Genus Schizopygopsis Steidachner
Species Schizopigopsis stoliczkai Steindachner
Russian name – false osman;
This species inhabits in water ponds of East Pamir and is an object for commercial fishing.
Biotic community in Yashilkul and Karakul lakes is replenished by Schizothorax intermedius
and Nоemacheilus stoliczkai. F.A. Turdakov underlined (1963), that false osman prevails in
ponds of East Pamir, differing from Amudaria trout, numerous in ponds of West Pamir. It is
deemed as an endemic of Central Asia (Tibet Province).

Family Сobitidae – Loach
Genus Nоemacheilus Hasselt - loaches.
Species Nоemacheilus stolickai Steindachner 1866.
The Russian name in Kyrgyzstan – stone-loach; Kyrgyz name – it murun, Tadjik name –mur
This species was found and described for the first time from West Tibet (Tsumuriri lake, basin of
Ind river).
It is deemed to be endemic of Tibet Province in Central Asia (Nikolsky, 1938).
Males differ from females by peculiar swellings on first five branchy rays of fins. An extremely
variable species. Variability is well expressed in specimens with 5 cm in length.
This species is spread in all mountainous upper reaches and parts of Amudaria, Syrdaria, Chu,
Ili, Ayaguz (Kazakhstan), Tarim, Ind, Gilmend, Tibet. It inhabits in lakes – Yashilkul, Karakul,
Inskanderkul and upper reaches of mountainous rivers of Pamir. Its sub-species N. lacus nigri
inhabits in Karakul lake ( Nikolsky, 1938).
It is a typical and numerous inhabitant of high mountainous rivers and lakes, forming
communities with marinka and osman. Typical habitats – rocky-pebble bottom in the tiderip.
Young fish prefers calmer and warmed up places. Its food is larvae of dayflies, chironomids and
other dipterans, bottom algal fouling. It is deemed to be “coarse” fish, without commercial value.
It does not attract the attention of population because of its significant infection rate of ligulosis.

Family Sisoridae – mountain catfish
Genus Glyptosternum McClelland
Species Glyptosternum reticulatum McClelland
Russian name – Turkestan bullhead (Turdakov,1963; Pivnev, 1990 et el.). In some publications
(Zhadin, Gerd, 1961) it is called mountain catfish. Some researchers point out that mountain or
Turkestan catfish inhabits in ponds of West Pamir, in the basin of Amudaria river it does not go
out of the boundaries of mountains. However, it is met in Syrdaria near Tashkent. In the Atlas of
the Kyrgyz SSR on the fauna map the location of G. Reticulatum is indicated in tributaries of
West Kyzylsu river in the western part of Alai valley. But in works of the prominent
ichthyologists (Turdakov, 1952, 1963; Pivnev, 1990; Konurbaev, Timirkhanov, 2003) Alai
valley as an areal of Turkestan (mountain) catfish is not mentioned (except for the Atlas of the
Kyrgyz SSR). As all researchers underline, the species is still poorly studied.
It is known that this fish keeps to the bottom of fast streaming flows, suck on stones. It is a bad
swimmer. It does not endure large turbidity of water – a lot of it die because of gills obstruction
with silts and is drifted downstream. If the period of turbid water is long, catfish leaves such
rivers. So, it should be looked for in rivers with pure water. We did not find Turkestan bullhead.
During the work implementation it was revealed that it was necessary to prepare a series of
determinants on PATCA fauna for the following work, including determinants on fish. There is a
key for identification of fish species from ponds of Alai valley below.

For monitoring of fish on the supposed PATCA area we enclose a brief determinant of species
inhabiting in its ponds.


1 ( 2 ) A body is covered by small scales, spinelets, plates or bare.
2 (3) There is a “fatty” fin on the dorsum behind the dorsal fin, which does not have
        rays……………………………………..fam. Salmonide: Salmonidae
3 ( 4 ) A fatty fin is not available,. There is one fin on the dorsum.
4 ( 5 ) There is a long leather-like crest, a body is bare. A head is strongly flattened in front from
        top downward, a mouth is transversal. There are four pairs of barbells.
         ………………………Fam. Mountain catfish: Sisoridae, gener. Glyptosternum
        McClelland , species Glyptosternum reticulatum McClelland
5 ( 6 ) A head is not flattened, one, two or three pairs of barbells, a body is covered with fine
        scales or bare.
6 ( 7 ) A body is teretial, bare or covered with very fine scales. There is a drawing on the body
        made by dark spots or strips. There are three pairs of barbells. A swimming bladder is
        included into a bony capsule….. ………….Fam. Loach: Cobitidae
                           Gener. Nоemacheilus Hasselt, species Nоemacheilus stolizckai Kessler
7 ( 6 ) Two pairs of barbells or not available at all, a body is flattened from sides, is covered
        with cycloid scales, more rare – without scales. A swimming bladder is not included into
        a bony capsule. ………………….………………Fam. Carp– Cyprinidae
8 ( 11 ) Two or one pair of barbells.
9 ( 10 ) Two pairs of barbells. Scales are fine, overlap on each other, forming in the front part of
        the body evident transversal rows. The first ray of dorsal fin is with 10-20 pairs of
        denticles. Specimens inhabiting in turbid water coloration is light silver, in transparent
        water – sides are bright orange, a belly is yellow ….Gen. Schizothorax Heckel, species
        Schizothorax intermedius McClelland
9 (10 ) One pair of barbells. Space scales are available, below a side line it creates two rows.
         ………..………gener. Diptychus Steidachner, species Diptychus sewerzowi Kessler
11 ( 8) Barbells are not available. A body is almost bare, torpedo-like with a strong tail-stem.
         ………Gener. Schizopygopsis Steindachner, species Schizopygopsis stoliczkai
Endemic Karakul stone-loach Noemacheilus lacus nigri inhabits in high mountainous cold water
and salty Karakul lake in East Pamir.

1. Ichthyofauna of PATCA ponds has a long background of study.
2. 7 species of fish are recorded in ichthyofauna of supposed transborder conserved area,
   including two species which have a status of especially protected ones: Turkestan (or
   mountain catfish) is introduced into the Red List of Kyrgyzstan, Amudaria trout – is
   introduced into the Red List of Tadjikistan.
3. One species – Karakul stone-loach is a Pamir endemic, the remained four species are sub-
   endemics of Central Asia.
4. Two species of fish – Amudaria trout and false osman – are fished out commercially.
5. Young marinkas and stone-loaches, female and male osmans, trouts, stone-loaches were met
   in our fishing outs.

Section 3. Reasons for Deterioration of Fish Habitat Conditions in Alai Valley
Reasons and a nature of changes in natural ecosystems are basically anthropogenic. It is
expressed in changes in the hydrological regime of rivers by construction of irrigation network

of hydro-energy projects. In the first case water is withdrawn from the river beds and
redistributed throughout the territory. In the second case natural migration ways for river types of
fish are blocked. Besides, a large impact on life conditions in ponds is made by the agricultural
use of lands - intensive cattle grazing, plowing of lands for cultivated crops, concentration of
cattle-breeding objects near the river beds. These anthropogenic factors lead to shallowing of
watercourses, their pollution by solid particles and organics, which is negatively told on water
quality and soils of water ponds. Destruction of lignose and herbaceous vegetation near ponds is
one more reason. Forests and rich herbaceous vegetation play a role of water-saving and
streamflow generating factors, and serve as a shelter for aerial stages of aquatic insects, which in
their turn are (imago and larvae) fodder objects for fish. It is also necessary to take into
consideration, that glaciers play a main role in formation of the river flows of Alai valley.
Contamination of glaciers by dust, gaseous particles, chemical compounds is also a factor which
contributes to deterioration of life conditions not only for fish, but also for other aquatic
inhabitants. Based on the above it should be acknowledged that for conservation of fish habitat
conditions in ponds it is necessary to take measures on conservation of all components of the
environment in Alai valley.

                      Recommendations on Fish Habitats Conservation
   1. It is necessary to develop measures on conservation of forest, shrub and herbaceous
       vegetation as factors forming the environment for conservation of amphibian insects’
       imago and factors which form flows.
   2. To define reasons which cause contamination of glaciers and ponds and to develop
       measures on prevention of pollution of glaciers and snowfields – sources of PATCA
       aquatic ecosystems feeding.
   3. To develop measures on prevention of erosion processes development.
   4. To define norms of water withdrawal for domestic needs and for agricultural purposes.
   5. To strengthen a role of ecological education for forming a sense of responsibility in
       population in PATCA areas for maintaining pure ponds and their biological diversity.
   6. To develop “Rules of Fishing and Fish-Farming” as a measure for conservation of the
       species composition with a goal of poaching prevention and maintaining a quantity of
   7. To organize activities on maintaining a number of rare and conserved types of fish.
   8. To re-orientate population for using alternative sources of energy for conservation of
       lignosa and shrub vegetation.
   9. To prepare and to publish a determinant of fish, necessary for ichthyofauna monitoring
       in PATCA ponds..
   10. To prepare and to publish a Red List of PATCA.

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