Institute of Zoology of Uzbek Academy of Sciences

Ornithological collection

Serial collections of the ornithological collection

Currently, the ornithological collection of the Institute of Zoology of Uzbek Academy of Sciences contains 5514 specimens of 328 bird species. They comprise 53 families of 18 orders. The unique feature of the collection is that it contains the series of collections from Ustyurt, the delta of the Amudarya, Karshi and Golodnaya steppe made in the mid-20th century, when these areas were intact, prior to significant man-made transformations. Serial collections were also made in the Desert Kyzylkum, ridges Nuratau, Gissar and Babatag. The collection includes 72% of the avifauna of Uzbekistan. There are also specimens from north-east of Turkmenistan, as well as skins obtained resulting from an exchange from Russia (Murmansk province) and Kyrgyzstan. The geographic location of an insignificant number of specimens in the collection (1.72% of the total number in the collection) was unidentified.

T.Z. Zakhidov

An initiator of the ornithological collection at the Institute of Zoology was academician T.Z. Zakhidov, who from the first years of the establishment of the Institute of Zoology in 1950 supervised faunistic studies of vertebrate animals in Uzbekistan. Ornithological studies in Uzbekistan were carried out in various areas; therefore, serial collections are confined to specific areas and years of studies.

H.S. Salikhbaev

The first keeper of the collection was H.S. Salikhbaev, Cand. Biol. From April 1946 to December 1948 he supervised studies of game and commercial birds in the delta of the River Amudarya. In 1948-1950, the most part of the collection was made by V.P. Kostin and T.A. Pavlenko mainly from the Ferghana Valley, and by H.S. Salikhbaev in the delta of the River Amudarya. In general, by 1950, the collection had included only 648 specimens.

V.P. Kostin

In 1951, V.P. Kostin replenished the collection with the specimens from Turkmenistan (Tashauz province, Lake Sarykamysh and Kunya-darya). In 1952, the collection was replenished by the materials collected by V.P. Kostin and H.S. Salikhbaev from Bukhara and Khoresm provinces. In 1953 specimens collected by H.S. Salikhbaev from Gallyaaral district were included into the collection. In 1953-1954, V.P. Kostin continued the collection of specimens in southern Aral region (Tashauz province of Turkmenistan), on Plateau Ustyurt and in Chimbai and Kegeily districts of Karakalpakstan. At the same time, M.M. Ostapenko and O.P. Bogdanov carried out faunistic collections in Surkhandarya province. In 1955, H.S. Salikhbaev made a significant contribution to the collection from this region and in 1956 from Plateau Ustyurt. In 1957-1959, the collection was replenished with the collections of T.A. Pavlenko from the Golodnaya steppe. In 1958-1959, the skins of birds from the Turkestan ridge, the Kyzylkum Desert (Aktau, Bukantau, Minbulak, Uchkuduk, Kuldjuktau) were included into the collection without any names of collectors indicated on them. As the ornithological collections of this institute were under supervision of H.S. Salikhbaev, these skins were prepared by temporary laboratory assistants headed by him. Since 1960, faunistic collections were carried out in the south of Uzbekistan; in 1960-1961, on the Ridge Kugitang; in 1961-1962, on Lake Kitai, in the vicinity of Salavat, Termez, Kaptarkhona, Jarkurgan, on Gissar Ridge, Lake Aral-Paigambar. In 1962, H.S. Salikhbaev and M.M. Ostapenko carried out studies in the area of Ridge Babatag. In that year T.A. Pavlenko replenished the collection with specimens collected from Galyaaral. In 1963-1965, the Institute of Zoology conducted studies in Karshi steppe (H.S. Salikhbaev, M.M. Ostapenko and T.A. Pavlenko); in 1966-1967, in Nuratau mountains (M.M. Ostapenko, H.S. Salikhbaev, D.Yu. Kashkarov and A.Sh. Sharipov). At the same time, S.D. matyakubov carried out ornithological collections in the flat-land of Tashkent province. The study of the avifauna of anthropogenic landscapes of Uzbekistan was initiated in 1968.

A field trip to the Ferghana province, 1972:
M.Sharipov, E.Shernazarov, D.Yu.Kashkarov, G.P.Tretyakov

Collections were also made in the Ferghana Valley under the supervision of D.Yu. Kashkarov in 1968 to 1972, who became the keeper of the collection with the initiation of this collection. M.M. Ostapenko, A.Sh. Sharipov, G.P. Tretyakov, E.Sh. Shernazarov, E.L. Lanovenko and some other scientists. Hence, in the period from 1951 to 1970 the collection was expanded with 2907 specimens (52.69% of the entire collection).

D.Yu. Kashkarov

In 1972, the Laboratory of Ornithology initiated studies on bird migrations. Almost all associates of this laboratory participated in these studies and replenished the collection. As a result, in 1972-1984, the collection was expanded with specimens from the area of Keles and Minvody (on the Uzbek-Kazakh border 20 km from Tashkent), the Ferghana valley (the River Soh in the foothills of the Alai Ridge and vicinities of Village Pungan in the valley of the River Syrdarya), the Desert Kyzylkum (Kuldjuktau, Tamdy, Bukantau, Mingbulak), the Jizzak pass and Gallyaaral, from northern and southern coasts of Lake Aidarkul, and Salavat (the lower course of the River Surkhandarya). As a result, in the span of 10 years (1971-1980) the collection was replenished with 1454 specimens (26.35% of the total collection).

M.M. Ostapenko

M.M.Ostapenko became the keeper of the collection in 1980, and E.N. Lanovenko in 1990. After 1984, extensive faunistic studies practically ceased. In the following period studies were mainly carried out on rare and game-commercial species, for which no collections were needed. Some minor contributions were made by N.E. Lanovenko from Kuldjuktau in 1986, by Biserov M.F. from fish farm Balykchi (Tashkent province) in 1990 and from Nuratau nature reserve (the Ridge Nuratau) in 1993. Totally, only 328 bird specimens were stored in the collection from 1981 until hitherto (5.94% of all collections).

A room of the ornithological collection of the institute

The ornithological collection is housed in the building of the Institute of Zoology of Uzbek Academy of Sciences. The collection occupies depository room 19 on the second floor. There is a separate room for working with collected materials. Bird skins are stored in special cabinets, in boxes with covers. Fumigation is carried out every 2 or 3 years. Relatively stable temperature regime and air humidity are maintained in the room. A functional card-index and electronic database are available for working on collected materials.


© Compiled by Roman Kashkarov
Translated by Javkhar Khodjaev
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Last modified: 19.12.2008