Kazakhstan fauna has the animals, brought into our territory - black fox, sable, muskrat and many species of fish and others. The mountain fauna is also very diverse. Altai, Zhungar Alatau, Northern Tien-Shan faunas are rich too. Semi-deserts and deserts are inhabited by foxes, dog-foxes, gazelles, antelopes, hedgehogs and rabbits, as well as many birds. Organization of the protected areas (natural reserves, national parks, special nature reserves) has regulated the number of their inhabitants.
There are about 835 species of vertebrates registered in the republic. Among them are 172 species of mammals, 481 species of reptiles, 150 species of fish. The number of invertebrates and insects exceeds 50 thousand species.
Many rivers, lakes and artificial reservoirs are rich in fish. Fishing industry is mainly developed in the Caspian Sea. Hydrocarbon production in the Caspian shelf has deteriorated environmental conditions of the Caspian region and the tail waters of the Ural River. The result is the mass death of Caspian seals and the reducing number of sturgeon (beluga, sturgeon, etc). Enormous material damage is caused to the fishery farms, involved in sturgeon fishing and black caviar production.
As known, wildlife resources are used for production of food and raw materials, and are the ground for development of various sectors of Kazakhstan economy, besides, they are of great scientific, practical and economic importance. Once, wild horses, kulans, tigers, steppe lynx, wagtails, musk rats and other animals inhabited the territory of our republic. Today, many of them are extinct. The fate of these animals can be repeated by dozens of representatives of the modern Kazakhstan fauna - snow leopards, antelopes, big-eared hedgehogs, flamingos and many others. The problems of plant and animal life are important not only for our country but also for others.
The category of rare and endangered animals classified 40 species of mammals, 56 species of birds, 3 species of amphibians and 16 species of fish.
In 1948, in order to protect the rare and endangered species of plants and animals, the International Union for Conservation ot Nature and Natural Resources was established to collect information for a Red Book.
In 1966-1981 the first volume of the Red Book was published, containing the data about the rare and endangered plants and animals. The expanding area of regions with unfavorable environment created dangerous conditions for many animals in Kazakhstan. In order to protect them in 1978 the first part of the Red Book - «Animals» - was released. In 1996 a new edition of the Red Book of the Republic of Kazakhstan was published.
Red Book of Kazakhstan
The Red Book («The Red Book of facts») is a set of information about all the animals and plants that are in some way are endangered with extinction due to human activity.
The Red Book includes 128 species and sub-species of vertebrates, 18 species of fish and cyclostomes, 3 amphibians, 10 species of reptiles, 57 species of birds, 40 species of mammals.
The vast Kazakhstan territory and geographical position in the center of Eurasia, led to formation of a wide variety of natural conditions and the flora and fauna. According to the data of the Book for genetic fund of Kazakhstan fauna, there are 835 species of vertebrates - fish, amphibians, reptiles, birds and mammals. Kazakhstan Red book is an annotated list of rare and endangered animals, plants and mushrooms. It has three editions, the last of which was published in 1999.
Animals in need of special protection:
the hoofed animals - gazelle, Turkmen kulan, wild sheep; Ustyurt, Altai, Karatau moufions, tugai deer; carnivorous animals - the snow leopards, Tien-Shan brown bears, sand cats, caracals manuls, honey badgers;
gnawing animals - beavers, groundhog marmot, Selevin’s mouse, five and three-toed pygmy jerboas;
insect-eating animals - muskrats, hedgehogs;
waterfowl animals - Dalmatian and pink pelicans, whooper swans, flamingos, white and blackstorks; inhabitants of the steppes and deserts - bustards, jacks, sociable plovers, demoiselle cranes
birds of prey - lammergeyers, Himalayan vultures, golden eagles, imperial eagles, white-tailed eagles, falcons - peregrine and saker;
reptiles - lizard, Balkan glass-snakes, variegated toad-beaded agamids, multi-ocellated racerunner, 4 species of snakes, amphibians - Semirechye newt;
fish - the Aral and Caspian salmons, Syrdarya shovelnoses and pike asps.