Protected Areas

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Trapped Tur, ready for getting a collar
In 1887, the British traveler and diplomat, Oliver Wardrop, crossed the fertile Alazani valley in search of adventure in the forested mountains above the small town of Lagodekhi in Eastern Georgia. Commenting on the view across the valley from his lodgings in Sighnaghi, Wardrop noted “the grand Caucasus mountains, rising like a wall from the [...]
East Caucasian Tur, Capra caucasica cylindricornis
Our horses heaved and snorted as they pulled us up the steep, narrow ridge, deep in the forests of Lagodekhi. Their shoes occasionally struck protruding ridges of crumbling slate, leaving an eerie ring in the air. In other places, their hooves would churn the light soil and decaying leaves underfoot into an orange-brown mush. The [...]
Lagodekhi, Georgia
This blog post was written by David Morrison, former Executive Director of Caucasus Nature Fund, now Chair of CNF's Board of Directors  When I started CNF in 2008 I had no idea I would stay for over eight years or that, with Geof having now taken over as CNF’s Executive Director, I would take on a [...]
Bezoar goat (Capra aegagrus aegagrus) at Lagodekhi, Geogia
Camera-traps installed in the forests of Lagodekhi Protected Areas in Eastern Georgia have captured images of a Bezoar goat, months after an unprecedented Bezoar sighting in a different part of the reserve. Bezoar goats, which generally prefer dry and rocky habitats, have never been photographed in Lagodekhi Protected Areas and camera-trap images of a six-year [...]
Male Bezoar (Capra aegagrus aegagrus) at Lagodekhi, Georgia
Camera –traps installed in the forests of Lagodekhi Protected Areas in the mountains of Eastern Georgia have caught images of an unexpected visitor, sparking cautious optimism for biodiversity in the region. The camera traps, installed by local biodiversity NGO NACRES, and funded by Protected Areas financing mechanism, the Caucasus Nature Fund (CNF), were intended to [...]
Algeti National Park, Georgia
Not even a month has passed since Giorgi Aptsiauri, 25, joined the team of rangers in Algeti National Park, an hour’s drive from the Georgian capital Tbilisi. But having spent years already roaming the forests around his native Manglisi on the edge of the National Park, Giorgi came well prepared for the job. “It wasn’t [...]
Mitrala National Park, Georgia
Adjara on the shores of the Black Sea. From the subtropical coastline, dotted with citrus plantations and seaside resorts, the lesser Caucasus Mountains rise impressively, their cloudy peaks already capped with snow in late November. Nestled in the foothills of these mountains is Mtirala National Park, one of Georgia’s youngest national parks, founded in 2007. [...]
Driving through Vashlovani Protected Areas, you could be forgiven for thinking you had been transported to another continent. Limestone canyons rise cathedral-like from arid scrubland, giant vultures soar over vast grassy steppe and, in one corner, ancient mud volcanos bubble languidly – the sun drying the sludge on the ground around them into a giant, [...]
Fighting Bezoar Goats © WWF-Armenia/A.Malkhasyan
Because Armenia’s Khosrov Forest is only an hour or so from Yerevan, I have been there at least a dozen times over the last six years, and last month I drove out there again, this time mainly for the celebration of WWF’s 10 years in the country. Khosrov, which has been receiving CNF support since [...]
Lake Goshi in Dilijan National Park, Armenia
Mid-April, CNF's Armenia national coordinator Arman Vermishyan and I set off for a closer look at some of the Armenian protected areas where we are already working or are planning to work. Our dual objective was to assess their problems and potential, and to scout out the Armenian leg of our September donor trip.   [...]
Protected Areas Archives | Caucasus Nature Fund