Mongolia retains vast areas of relatively unspoiled natural habitats, including boreal forest (taiga), steppe grassland, semi-desert and desert, as well as important wetlands. These habitats still support healthy populations of wildlife species that are in decline or have disappeared elsewhere. Until recently, pressures on Mongolia's natural habitats were felt to be relatively low, especially compared with parts of neighbouring China. However, the environment in Mongolia now looks set to enter a period of unprecedented change.
This directory is a contribution to sustainable development planning in Mongolia. A total of 70 IBAs have been identified covering a total area of 8.4 million ha, equivalent to 5% of the territory of Mongolia.
This directory identifies a number of threats to biodiversity at Mongolia's IBAs. It documents the biodiversity values of important areas natural habitat, draws attention to the conservation issues facing them, and provides a tool for integrating them into development planning. The conservation of Mongolia's IBAs will require the combined efforts of government, civil society, private sector and the donor community.