Biodiversity of Mariamdjvari State Reserve
The beautiful landscape of Mariamdjvari State Reserve is generated by biodiverseforest ecosystems, where climatic conditions and biodiversity characteristic for Tsiv-Gombori range are observed.
90 % of the territory is covered by forests. In Mariamdjvari State Reserve and Korugi Managed Reserve there are 53 species of woody plants. Pine forest is represented in the South of Tsiv-Gombori Range as well as on the Northern slopes.
Fresh pine tree forests and forests mixed with deciduous plants can be found in the Reserve. Due to abundance of different species of pine, Mariamdjvari is an interesting object in terms od scientific research. Here are four forms of the pine: Pyramidal (Pinus sosnowskyi Nakai var. pyramidalis Kurd.); Compact (Pinus sosnowskyi Nakai var. compacta Kurd.); Oval (Pinus sosnowskyi Nakai var. ovalus Kurd.); Umbrellalike (Pinus sosnowskyi Nakai var. umbraculifera Kurd.).
Deciduous forest is mainly represented by Georgian oak and hornbeam; Rarely are found alders. There are about 50 species of trees and bushes in Mariamdjvari reserve. In the understory you can find- cornel, medlar, hawthorn, nuts and blackberries.
Floodplain forests of Korugi and Iori Managed areas give special importance to the biodiversity of the Protected areas, which due to unique flora and fauna for Georgian and the world’s ecosysytems need a special surveillance. Here are plants caharacteristic for temperate zone as well as semi-deserts. From the representatives of temperate zone there are: mastic tree, hackberries, juniper, nitraria, which is an endangered plant. Semi-desert plants are: pomegranate, tamarisk, barberry and others.
From grasses here can be found: Artemisia, beard grass, caperbushes, caragana and others
The forests of KorugiManaaged Reserve are located in a narrow strip on the both sides of the river Korugi, on the first and second terraces. According to the natural conditions the main forest species are considered: Longleaved oak, poplar, meadow elm and willow. And secondary forest-froming species – crab-apple, crab and cherry plum.
In the Managed Area from bushes there are- hawthorn, blackthorn, hick, tamarisk, sweetbrier and others. These forests are characterized by climbing plants – smilax, clematis and others. These thorny plants together with blackberry form impenetrable thickets, which is a perfect shelter and nesting place for wild birds.
Species from the “Red List”of Georgia
In the protected areas there also can be found: yew, grove and mountain oaks, wingnut, nuts and mastic tree. The information about the herbaceous plants is very poor.
Relict and endemic species
From endemic woody plants inMariamdjvari State Reserve the common species are: Geogian barberry, alder, birch Medvedev, plain nuts, hawthorn and crab-apple. In Korugi and Iori Managed Areas the number of endemic species decreases.
In Mariamdjvari State Reserve fauna is represented by 157 species, among them 25 are mammals and 114 birds. From mammals there are: roe and bear, marten, wild cat, badger, fox, rabbit, the Caucasian squirrel. From birds there are: finch, blackbird, Eurasian wrens, wood pigeon, hoopoe, cuckoo, kites, forest owl, green woodpecker, sparrow-hawk.
Species form the “Red List” of Georgia
In the protected areas there are 21 rare and endangered vertebrate animals, among them 6 species of mammals and 15 species of birds. From mammals there are: brown bear, lynx, the Caucasian squirrel, long-clawed Mole Vole and others. Form birds: sparrowhawk, lesser kestrel and others.
According to the existing data in Mariamdjvari State Reserve there are 31 endemic species of small mammals: Greater noctule bat (Crociduragueldenstaedtii), Greater horseshoe bat (Rhinolophusferrumequinum), Lesser horseshoe bat (Rhinolophushipposideros), forest dormouse (Driomysnitedula), a small forest mouse (Sylvamusuralensis), Pontic mouse (Sylvaemusponticus), house mouse (Musmusculus), the black rat (Rattusrattus), gray rat (Rattusnorvegicus) and others.