Khor Virap Marsh

White Stork
Mount Ararat
Khor Virap
poth hole
Khor Virap March fire
Kakhanov Canal
Khor Virap June
Khor Virap

Khor Virap Marsh

  • Country: 
  • Site number: 
  • Area: 
    50 ha
  • Designation date: 
  • Coordinates: 
    39°53'N 44°34'E
Materials presented on this website, particularly maps and territorial information, are as-is and as-available based on available data and do not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on the part of the Secretariat of the Ramsar Convention concerning the legal status of any country, territory, city or area, or of its authorities, or concerning the delimitation of its frontiers or boundaries.


Khor Virap Marsh.25/01/07; Ararat Province; 50 ha; 39°53'16"N 044°34'18"E. State Sanctuary. Located in the ancient Arax riverbed in the central part of the country, close to the capital city of Yerevan, this freshwater marsh of semi-artificial origin consists mainly of reed beds fed by an irrigation canal and surrounded by drainage channels. The site is important for over 100 species of migratory waterbirds of which 30 species are breeding here, including globally threatened Marbled Teal (Marmaronetta angustirostris) and endangered White-headed Duck (Oxyura leucocephala) as well as nationally threatened species such as Pygmy Cormorant (Phalacrocorax pygmaeus) and Gadwall (Anas strepera). The site also supports a number of mammal species such as Jungle Cat (Felis chaus), European otter (Lutra lutra), and the only non-native wild mammal Coypu (Myocastor coypus). Large numbers of dragonfly species occur, including nationally endangered Hemianax ephippiger. The marsh plays a significant role in flood mitigation downstream and in sediment trapping. It is used for hunting, fishing, reed harvesting and to a lesser extent for cattle grazing. The area surrounding the site is of social and cultural value, especially the Khor Virap Monastery, which was built on the site of the ruins of the ancient capital Artashat. The site itself is threatened by a decrease in water level due to unsustainable use of water for irrigation, overgrazing, fires during the winter period, and poaching. A management plan does not currently exist but is planned. Ramsar Site no. 1989. Most recent RIS information: 2011.

Administrative region: 
Ararat Marz

  • National legal designation: 
    • State Sanctuary - Khor Virap
  • Last publication date: 


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