Alagol, Almagol, and Ajigol Wetlands
Alagol, Almagol, and Ajigol Wetlands are situated in the west of Atrak drainage basin, north of Gonbad-e Qabus County, Golestan Province. These Triple Wetlands are a part of the legacy of wetlands with a worldwide reputation. Gol is a Turkish word used for a lake, wetland, and pond.
On the flatlands of Turkmen Sahra, the huge Alagol wetlands has a total area of two thousand and five hundred – three thousand and twenty seven hectares and it is four and a half meters deep, Ajigol has an area of three hundred and twenty hectares and it is three meters deep, and Almagol has an area of two hundred and seven hectares and it is one and a half meters deep. They are the biggest to smallest triple wetlands in the southeast of the Caspian Sea.
All these three wetlands are irrigated by Atrak River and rainfall. Atrak originates from the mountains of the Hezar Masjed (Thousand Mosques) in Khorasan and it flows into the Gulf of Hussein Quli in the Caspian Sea.
Alagol is situated in seventy five kilometers of Gorgan, in the north of Tangly village. It lies on the Dasli-e-Beru border and it is located in the middle of Turkmen Saharan salt marsh. This wetland is a salty one that welcomes halophyte plants and animals. Almagol, The Lake of Apple in the native language, is a freshwater lagoon and protected area.
Encompassing these three wetlands, the land consists of limestone, sand, and schist. Its date backs to the forth quaternary (about two and a half million years ago).
Based on researches, there is a texture of different plants in this area. One hundred and five plant species made of eighty-four genera and thirty-nine families live here and it is also a reproduction center for migratory water birds. Besides, there exist some animals such as porcupine, great gerbil, wildcat, fox, corsac fox, jackal, and boar.
The birds which inhabit here are cormorant, black-necked grebe, grey heron, egrets, greater scaup, tufted duck, red-crested pochard, white-headed duck, Eurasian teal, coot, stilt, northern lapwing, mute swan, large white-headed gulls, sandpiper, little stint, white-tailed eagle, and lesser white-fronted goose.
Grass carp, Caspian barbel, capoeta, goldfish, wels catfish, rutilus rutilus caspicus, oarfish, common carp, and gobiidae are some fish species that can be found in this area. Besides, monitor lizard, lacerta strigata, European pond turtle, Caspian turtle, cobra, and Eurasian vipers are among the reptiles in this land.
Coontail, sedges, knotweed, ranunculus trichophyllus, and some aquatic plants like salsola, tamarix gallica, alhagi, common wild oat, and common couch belong to the vegetation of this land.