Below you can find a complete list of Turkmen animals. We currently track 147 animals in Turkmenistan and are adding more every day!
To say that Turkmenistan is far away from everywhere else is something of an understatement. It is one of the least visited countries in the world and has been known to only draw about 10,000 visitors total per annum. Largely desert in nature, Turkmenistan has a narrow fringe of slightly more salubrious land along the coast of the Caspian Sea to the west which hosts numerous species of both endemic and migratory birds, a large area of Central Asian desert that comprises about 2/3rds of the entire country in the middle, and a southeastern frontier region that is comprised of mountainous terrain bordering on the neighboring states of Iran and Afghanistan.
One might assume that the small population and large territory of the country provide a unique advantage for the survival of birds and animals even while the very inhospitable nature of the climate and terrain works against it. Yet, among its limited number of animal species, there is a total of 29 species listed as being endangered among its total enumeration of about 91 species of mammals, 82 of reptiles including a surprisingly large selection of snakes, 124 species of fish, 400 bird species and a mere 5 unique species of amphibians.
In such a challenging natural environment, human participation has taken its toll as well. Overgrazing, deforestation, and habitat incursion in the form of petrochemical exploration and development have also contributed to the overall decline in animal populations.
The Official National Animal Of Turkmenistan
There is no officially recognized overall National Animal of Turkmenistan but there are two distinct specimens that are regarded as highly symbolic of the country. These are national animals in practice even if they are only recognized as national types of their own individual species in proclamation.
The first is the unique breed of horse known as the Akhal-Teke, which appears in the center of the country’s national seal and is regarded as its National Horse. The second is an enormous species of dog known as the Alabai which is primarily used as a shepherd and officially proclaimed as the National Dog species.
Where To Find The Top Wild Animals In Turkmenistan
With tourist accommodations few and far between in this nomadic country, the best place to find wild animal species in Turkmenistan is in one of the country’s official wildlife preserves. This is not to say that wildlife isn’t present everywhere but that it is highly inconvenient to arrange for viewing expeditions outside of several established ones dedicated to visitors.
Even these dedicated places do not always offer the highest levels of accommodation, but the animal lover in Turkmenistan is advised to check out the Repetek Biosphere State Reserve or the Bereketli Garagum Nature Reserve for desert environments. For a look at the environment in the more mountainous regions, the Gaplangyr Nature Reserve, the Kopetdag Nature Reserve, and the Koytendag Nature Reserve are all open to visitation and study. Unfortunately, illegal poaching has driven a number of protected species in these reserves closer to becoming extinct than they would be under ordinary circumstances.
The Most Dangerous Animals In Turkmenistan
While one might consider the tiger to be the most dangerous animal in Turkmenistan, the country is also home to numerous other creatures which probably exact a larger toll overall than could be caused by the small numbers of the big cats present in the country.
The Caspian Cobra is probably a significant candidate for the crown of Most Dangerous Animal, but these snakes are not considered to be as venomous as a deadly spider named the Karakurt. This spider has a bite with venom far deadlier than that found in any of the snakes present in the country.
The country is also home to two species of the European Brown Bear and several smaller cat species but they are all present in only very limited numbers.
Endangered Animals In Turkmenistan
Already stressed by their severe environment, a number of animal species in Turkmenistan have also been victimized by human factors such as overgrazing and habitat destruction in the form of deforestation or through contamination from the numerous petrochemical facilities which comprise a large percentage of the national GDP.
The tiger, as mentioned above, is highly endangered here and everywhere else in its natural range. The Asian cheetah is believed to be extinct. Many other feline species call Turkmenistan home and are on the endangered list. These include the unique Pallas’s Cat and the Leopard. Several ruminants such as the Markhor, the Turkmen Wild Goat, and the Turkmen Mountain Sheep are included, as is the Wild Ass.
Along the Caspian Sea, the Caspian Seal is endangered. A more famous entry on the list of endangered species is the Caspian Sturgeon from which caviar eggs are harvested. Should this species go extinct, it would have a worldwide impact.
Turkmen Animals List
- Angora Goat
- Barn Owl
- Black Widow Spider
- Camel Cricket
- Common Buzzard
- Common Raven
- Crab Spider
- Desert Locust
- Fire-Bellied Toad
- Flying Squirrel
- Glass Lizard
- Glow Worm
- Golden Oriole
- Green Bee-Eater
- Honey Badger
- Honey Bee
- Huntsman Spider
- Long-Eared Owl
- Masked Palm Civet
- Monitor Lizard
- No See Ums
- Peregrine Falcon
- Pond Skater
- Purple Emperor Butterfly
- River Turtle
- Sand Lizard
- Skink Lizard
- Slow Worm
- Stick Insect
- Striped Hyena
- Tiger Moth
- Tree Frog
- Water Buffalo
- Water Dragon
- White Tiger
- Wild Boar
- Wolf Spider
Animals in Turkmenistan FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)
Are there tigers in Turkmenistan?
There are a few tigers remaining in the wild in Turkmenistan but they are prized among Asiatic peoples for many medicinal and spiritual purposes. As a result, poaching continues and it seems likely that they will eventually survive only under highly protected conditions.