Sites & IBAs

Important Bird Areas (IBAs) of Georgia

With effort of our predecessor organization (Georgian Center for the Conservation of Wildlife / GCCW), since 2001, our country has become an active participant of the global programme for establishment of Important Bird Areas. More than 100 countries in entire world participated in this programme that has valuable influence on environmental protection and proper use of natural resources. Its success is so versatile and impressive, that in many countries even the legislative acts hardened, while for the EU member and candidate countries it became even compulsory. Thus, the implementation of this programme in Georgia helps not only in solving of environmental problems, but also creates one of the condition for European integration. So what is the programme about and what are hidden secrets behind the IBA Programmes' success? This page will tell about the history of the programme, its goals and objectives, accomplishments and introduces the basic principles and provisions on what is being done in this direction in Georgia.

What is Important Bird Area / IBA?

Important Bird Area is internationally important Birds and Biodiversity area with high meaning of conservation status, as on regional, national and global levels. They have been investigated and identified based on standard criteria’s established upon international agreements and conventions and thus as a practical tool for the protection of wild nature. These areas must be subject for the necessary protection in order to maintain viable populations of species. In particular, IBAs are:
•    Important Areas for birds and subject for nature conservation in general
•    Areas selected based on international conservation criteria’s
•    Areas with regional, national and global status and meaning 
•    Areas for favorable conservation measure and activities
•    Potential protected areas
•    Supporting methodological component for the conservation and sustainable development

Why birds?

For many reasons, wild bird species are the most important objects to conduct favorable nature protection measures:
•    Birds are sensitive indicators of the state of the environment
•    Birds have critically important function in the natural environment
•    Birds have direct and indirectly relation in humans’ activities in terms of economic and cultural values
•    Birds play an important role in science development and better understanding of the world
•    Birds are diverse, beautiful, inspiring and bring filling of happiness and inspiration
•    Birds play an important role in raising awareness of conservation
•    As with all other groups of animals and plants, birds have the moral right to continue to exist on our planet
•    Finally, it is our right to protect birds

How do we select Important Bird Area?

Selection of Important Bird Areas’ hold based on criteria’s and methodology established in the framework of international agreements and conventions. Identification of different groups of bird species is a main methodology for establishing such areas and for boundaries’ determination:
•    Globally endangered species
•    Species with limited distribution
•    Species limited by the same biomes and congregation

Where are these areas in Georgia?

Today Georgia has detected and identified 32 Important Bird and Biodiversity Areas: 

ID Name Code Area (h) Longitude Latitude Criteria
135 რიწა / Ritsa GE001 38.297 43.46666667 40.56666667 A2
133 ფსხუ / Pskhu GE002 8.576 43.41666667 40.81666667 A2
134 გუმისთა / Gumista GE003 40.032 43.31666667 40.66666667 A2
3085 კოლხეთი / Kolkheti GE004 56.052 42.16666667 41.83333333 A4iii
136 კინტრიში / Kintrishi GE005 15.726 41.75 41.81666667 A2
137 ლიახვი / Liakhvi GE006 27.922 42.25 43.91666667 A2
3081 აღმოსავლეთ კავკასიონი / Eastern Caucasus GE007 37.370 42.16666667 45.16666667 A1, A2, A3, B2, B3
3083 მესხეთი / Meskheti GE008 82.828 41.58333333 43.16666667 A1, A2, A4iv, B1iv, B2
18579 ხანჩალის ტბა / Khanchali Lake GE009 2.580 41.28333333 43.55 A1, A4i, B1i
138 ალგეთი / Algeti GE010 13.290 41.55 44.5 A1
3082    იორის ზეგანი / Iori Region GE011 239.374 41.41666667 46 A1, B2, B3
18571 სვანეთი / Svaneti GE012 69.436 43 42.83333333 A1, A2
18570 რაჭა / Racha GE013 56.906 42.33333333 43.66666667 A1, A2
18588 ბათუმი / Batumi GE014 41.938 41.63333333 41.63333333 A4iv, B1iv
18572 აჭარა-იმერეთის ქედი / Ajara-Imereti Ridge GE015 17.3279 41.75 42.5 A1, A2
18573 შავშეთის ქედი / Shavsheti Ridge GE016 38.253 41.5 42.33333333 A1, A2
18577 კარწახის ტბა / Kartsakhi Lake GE017 3.618 41.21666667 43.21666667 A4i, B1i
18578 თაბაწყურის ტბა / Tabatskuri Lake GE018 9.991 41.65 43.63333333 A1
18574 თრიალეთის ქედი / Trialeti Ridge GE019 66.848 41.75 44 A1, A2
18575 კვერნაკის ქედი / Kvernaki Ridge GE020 12.969 41.98333333 44.31666667 A1
18584 ყაზბეგი / Kazbegi GE021 94.889 42.66666667 44.66666667 A1, A2
18585 ხევსურეთი / Khevsureti GE022 81.272 42.66666667 45 A1, A2
18586 თუშეთი / Tusheti GE023 112.100 42.33333333 45.66666667 A1, A2
18587 ლაგოდეხი / Lagodekhi GE024 22.879 41.81666667 46.26666667 A1, A2
18568 ალაზნის ველი / Alazani Valley GE025 64.311 41.83333333 45.81666667 A1, A4i, A4iv, B1i, B1iv
18576 ქვემო ქართვის ვაკე / Lower Kura Valley  GE026 10.933 41.41666667 45.91666667 A1
18569 ჯანდარის ტბა / Jandari Lake GE027 2.229 41.43333333 45.21666667 A1, A4i, B1i
18581 ფარავანის ტბა / Paravani Lake GE028 5.830 41.43333333 43.8 A1
18582 საღამოს ტბა / Sagamo Lake GE029 857 41.31666667 43.75 A1
18583 ბუგდაშენის ტბა / Bugdasheni Lake GE030 397 41.21666667 43.7 A1, A4i, B1i
18580 მადატაფას ტბა / Madatapa Late GE031 1.978 41.18333333 43.76666667 A1, A4i, B1i
xx ჭოროხის შესართავი / Chorokhi Delta GE032 2.634 41.3600 41.3600 A1, A4i, A4ii, B1i, B1ii, B2


Important Bird Areas are in danger!

IBAs in Georgia are strongly impacted, mainly because of the wrong and unsustainable use and consumption of natural resources – mass severe logging, mountain meadows’ erosion due to the overgrazing, pollution of and dry rivers and lakes, unregulated and unstandardized hunting, unregulated land management and agriculture, and many other. In addition, incomplete understanding of the importance of nature conservation and less attention to these problems by the broader public.

Conservation and sustainable existence of Important Bird Areas tremendous lots of barriers and requires lots of effort. Supported us to stand up together for the protecting the wildlife in Georgia!

The Constitution of Georgia, Chapter 2, Basic Rights: Article 37, Paragraph 3:
Everyone has the right to live in a healthy environment and enjoy nature and cultural resources. Everyone is obliged to protect the nature, cultural resources and the environment.

First Important Bird Areas and its census results published in 1989. This census report composed whole Europe were 2,444 such places in 32 countries have been identified. The second census results were published in 2000, which in addition to the 51, has identified 3.619 new IBAs. Over the years 2000-2002, the list of IBAs has extremely increased where Georgia has joined and became part of the census as well.