Biodaiversity of Ajameti Managed Reserve
4738 hectares of Ajameti Managed Reserve area is covered by forests. In Ajameti Managed Reserve Imeretian oak and Zelkova old groves are preserved in its original form. In Ajameti forest you can often meet 100 - year old oaks, some of the trees are more than 250-years old. 4723 hectares of the area is covered by the oak forests, 93 hectares – hornbeam forests and 23 hectares Oriental hornbeam.
In Ajameti Managed Reserve dendroflora is represented with 60 species, and a thin understory cover with: rhododendron, medlar, sweetbrier and hawthorn.
From the species of the “Red List” of Georgia one of the main dignities of the managed reserve are rare Tertiary relicts - Imeretian oak (Quercusimeretina) and Zelkova (Zelcovacarpinifolia). Also there are other species from the “Red List”: Pastukhov ivy, Georgian hazel, elm, wych elm, wingnuts, nuts and more.
In Ajameti Reserve common mammals are: rebbit, fox, jackal, squirrel, weasel, badger and dormouse. The biggest indigenous animal in the reserve is roe.
There are more than 60 species of birds recorded in the reserve. Among them there are only twent-one nesting species in oak forest, other birds appear during migratory or winter period.
Amphibians represented in the reserve are: one species of triton, marsh frog, common and green frogs. Reptiles – grass snake and water snake.
Species from the “Red List” of Georgia
Rare and endangered species are spread in the managed reserve: noctule bats, Caucasian squirrel, dormouse, Forest dormouse and Caucasian otter.
There are 16 endemic species in Ajameti protected areas: Eastern European hedgehog (Erinaceusconcolor), Caucasian mole (Talpacaucasica), Gueldenstaedt's shrew (Crociduragueldenstaedtii), Mehely’s horseshoe bat, Rhinolophusmehelyi), common bent-wing bat (Miniopterusschreibersii), European hare ( Lepuseuropaeus), ordinary squirrel (Sciurus vulgaris) and others.
Biodiversity of Imereti Caves Protected Areas
From the existing caves of Imereti Protected Areas only Sataplia Reserve and Managed Reserve are explored botanically.
Sataplia Reserve is located in the damp subtropical zone. 98 % of the territory is covered with young Colchis type subtropical forest. These areas are dominated by beech forest – with boxwood understory and hornbeam forest – with Oriental hornbeam understory. From Coniferous trees there are yew (TaxusBaccata). There are 67 woody species recorded in the reserve area, among them 30 species are trees and 37 – bushes. From the represented species 59 are deciduous and 8 – evergreen.
Almost half of the woody plants are relicts. Among them are Caucasian hornbeam, Georgian oak, Eastern beech, chestnut and others.
From the elements of Colchis forest 8 species are spread in the Reserve: Quercushartwissiana, Imeretian buckthorns, common rhododendron, ruscus, Btcher’s Broom, Colchis capers, high cranberries and Colchis boxwood. From Poltava flora elements here can be found: boxwood, Colchis ivy, rhododendron and others.
There are 482 species of herbaceous plants.
Species included in the “Red List” of Georgia
In Sataplia preserve there are 9 woody species of rare and endangered plants included in the “Red List”: yew (Taxusbaccata L.), Colchis boxwood (BuxuscolchicaPojark.), chestnut (Castanea sativa Mill.),Imeretian oak QuercusimeretinaStev. ex. Maleev.), Colchis capers (StaphyleacolchicaStev.), Zelkova (Zelcovacarpinifolia (Pall.) C. Koch.) and others.
Endemic and relicts
Here are three Caucasus and one Georgian endemic.
There are 12 species of mammals, 5 reptiles, 4 amphibians and 30 species of birds in Sataplia Reserve. From large mammals here can be found jackal, badger, marten, Caucasian squirrel, European reabbit and fox, rarely wolf and deer.
A beautiful view of Colchis forest is filled with various species of birds. The Reserve is the domain of swallows, Caucasian finches, chiffchaff, blackbirds and jays. There areas are often visited by hoes, quail and woodcock.
In Sataplia territory there are grass eater and prey dinosaur tacks are preservedspread in different geological epochs. These tracks are collected in a quite small patch, this means that theis place was the chosen spot by dinosaurs. Dinosaurs found here are divided into separate groups by scientists and are reffered to Satapliyasauarus: Sataphliazaurus dzotsenidze, Sataphliazaurus tchabukiani; Sataphliazaurus gabunia and others.
Imereti caves are habitats for many bats. Among them one species is rare and endangered. Here can be found: older colony of Lesser Horseshoe Bat (RhinolophushipposiderosBechtein.) Besides above mentioned bats there are also: Greater Horseshoe Bat (Rhinolophusferrumequinum.); Lesser mouse-eared bat (MyotisoxygnathusMonticelli.); Natterer’s Bat (MyotisnattereriKuhl), whiskered bat (MyotismystacinusKuhl.); Lesser noctule (NyctalisleisteriKuhl); common noctuleNyctalisnoctulaSchreber).
Species included in the “Red List” of Georgia
Accoridng to the existing data there are 8 species of birds and one species of bat in Sataplia Reserve and Managed Reserve. These are: grZelyura mRabiobi (Myotis bechteini Kuhl.).
From birds there are: Lesser kestrel, owl, Levant Sparrowhawk, long-legged buzzard, greater spotted eagle and others.
9 endemic species from mammals are spread, among them: Asia Minor mouse (Sylvamusmystacinus), Caucasian forest mouse (Sylvaemusfulvipectus),the black rat (Rattusrattus) and others.