K rasprostraneniyu i ekologii khishchnykh ptits i sov na vostoke i zapade Mongolii [On distribution and ecology of birds of prey and owls in the east and west of Mongolia]. // Trudy Baikalo-Lenskogo gosudarstvennogo prirodnogo zapovednika [Proc. of the Baikal-Lena State Nature Reserve]. Issue 1. Moscow. Pp.85-91. Tabl.4. In Russian.
Materials, collected in the territory of Mongolia during field works in the composition of anti-plague teams of the Chita and Gorno-Altaisk anti-plaque station in the natural foci of plague are presented in the current work. The following aimaks were covered by field investigations: Khentei (Khurkhin-Gol valley, and partially Kerulen valley) in 1987-88 years; Central (Kerulen valley); Eastern (region of junction of borders, and partially, Kerulen valley) in 1987-1990; Sukhe-Bator (northern part) in 1987-88, Bayan-Ulegei in 1989-90 and short-term visit in 1989 of Kobdo aimak and in 1983-89 Ubsu-Nur aimak. In Eastern Mongolia studies were carried out since the end of June till the end of August, and in Western in 1989 in May-July and in 1990 in July-August. The main material was collected on stationary plots. In the Khentei aimak this is Khurkhin-Gol River valley in the vicinity of the Khentei settlement, in Eastern aimak - region of joint of borders of Russia, Mongolia and China (Shevarte Lake - border station Zorgol), in Central aimak - Kerulen valley in the vicinity of Baganur and in Bayan-Ulegei aimak - vicinity of the Tsagan-Nur settlement. Besides that, birds of prey and owls were recorded and counted during numerous trips. All sightings and discovered nests of birds of prey and owls were registered. Census of number were carried out during foot and automobile routes, recalculation was conducted on the number per 10 km of route (table 1, 2, 3, 4). Total it was 1070 km of foot and 9795 km of automobile routes. During works we registered 21 species of diurnal birds of prey and 5 species of owls. 43 nests of 8 species were found. During possibilities the collection of food remains (over 100 samples) and pellets (about 200) took place for analysis of feeding of birds of prey and bacteriological and serological research. In a series of cases the plague pathogens was isolated (discovered) in food remains, and during investigation of pellets the sero-positive results were received.
Description of 3 Vultures species on pp.87-88.
Bearded Vulture. This bird was sighted only in Bayan-Ulegei aimak in 1989: in Khalgat site 28 May one bird and in Bolshoi Khavsal site one Bearded Vulture 8 June and 3 birds on the next day.
Black Vulture. In the North-Western Mongolia the Black Vulture is a common species, but is distributed unevenly. It was sighted in Khara-Gobi, Shine-Dqava, Batu-Khavsal, Chigertei, Kok-Sai, Shar-Bulag-Zag sites, in the vicinity of the Kobdo town and Tsagan-Nur settlement. Possibility of breeding is not excluded there, because three living nests are found in 1984 in the south of Tuva in the close neighbourhood from the border with Mongolia. The wintering species - flock of 11 Black Vultures is sighted in December 1984 on carrion in the Urek-Nur Lake vicinity (Ubsanur aimak). We sighted wintering Black Vultures in 1988 in the south-west of Tuva in the Karga River valley very close to the state border with Mongolia. In Central aimak in the Kerulen River valley the Black Vulture is rare species, but the nesting fact is not excluded, because 1 July 1989 in the Baganur surroundings 2 Black Vultures were sighted, one of which was young. In one birds it was sighted 2, 6 and 16 July 1989 in the Dzun-Bailag-Gol River valley (right tributary of Kerulen). In Eastern aimak the Black Vulture is a rare species - four Black Vultures are sighted 27 July 1987 in the territory of Bulgan-Somon at 70 km to south of Choibolsan.
In the Khentei aimak the Black Vulture is a common breeding species. Its number is changing by years. If in 1987 total several sightings were known (pairs in the vicinity of Umen-Delger settlement and Barchin mountain and solitary birds in the Khurkhin-Gol valley) and on the count routines the Black Vulture was not recorded, so on the next year the Black Vulture by number has occupied the second place after the Black Kite. Repeatedly solitary birds were sighted as well as groups of 8 birds (21 July in the Mandalai-Gol River valley), right tributary of the Khurkhin-Gol). Two living nests of Black Vultures are found in 1988 in the Mandalai-Gol River valley on the slope of western exposition, grown by mixed forest. First nest was discovered 7 July at 5 km upper along the stream from Khurkhin-Gol River on the pine-tree top at the height 7-8 m. Nest was slightly-visible from aside with diameter 1,2 m and was made by means of thick branches. Completely feathered chick and adult bird were situated in the nest. Adult bird during our approaching to the nest, has left nest. During repeated visit 30 July and 2 August chick still has been in the nest and only 7 August during approaching to the tree it has flushed from the nest and soared down along the slope. The tarbagan remains were placed in the nest. The second nest was discovered 21 July at 7 km to south of the first one on the slope covered by mixed forest on the larch with height 10 m. It was situated in the middle part of tree at the height of 5 m, diameter of nest reached 1,1-1,2 m. In the nest one chick was situated, which judging by plumage, was younger than the chick in the first nest. Parents flew near nest. In the same day not far from the nest one group of 8 Black Vultures was sighted. They soared in the height, then swiftly during several minutes lowered to the carrion. The carrion of neat cattle and small cattle occupies the main place in the Black Vulture's feeding. Also tarbagans* are sighted among feeding objects. In two cases from the tarbagan remains, taken away from the Black Vulture, the plague pathogens was isolated.
Griffon Vulture. As well as the Bearded Vulture this species is sighted only in Western Mongolia. In May 1988 these birds repeatedly were sighted in Ubsunur aimak in the Khapshu site on the border with Tuva. In Bayan-Ulegei aimak the Griffon Vulture was sighted several times: in 1989 one pair 10 July in the Chigirtei site and 1 Griffon Vulture 14 June in Khara-Gobi site. On the next year the Griffon Vulture was observed 14 August in the Zuslan-Bulag site and 15 August in the Khudag site. The periodical breeding of this species is not excluded.
Table 1. Number of birds of prey and owls per 10 km of route in the North-Western Mongolia (Bayan-Ulgi aimak).
Table 2. Number of birds of prey per 10 km of route in the Khentei aimak.
Table 3. Number of birds of prey per 10 km of route in Eastern aimak.
Table 4. Number of birds of prey and owls per 10 km of route in the Sukhe-Bator and Central aimaks.
Tarbagan or Mongolian Marmot (Marmota sibirica).