Exploring Soil Erosion in High Altitude Pastures of Kyrgyzstan (by Maksim Kulikov, Hamburg University)
29 August 2011
UCA Bishkek, Kyrgyz Republic
Date: 29 August 2011, 4 PM
Venue: University of Central Asia, 138 Toktogul Street, Bishkek, Kyrgyz Republic. Conference Room
Greater than seventy-five percent of Kyrgyzstan’s territory is mountainous and breeding and raising livestock is the main source of income for people in these mountain areas. The contemporary prominence of this livelihood is consistent with the historical livelihoods of Kyrgyz people. High altitude summer pastures are the main resource for livestock maintenance and they play an important role in country’s economy. Difficult economic conditions are exposing the already fragile mountain pastures to overgrazing, and consequently to degradation and soil erosion. An effective and low cost tool is needed for pasture soil management. This lecture presents the preliminary findings of a doctoral study to analyze and compare the situation of soil degradation in four sites of Arslanbab region of Jalalabad region of Kyrgyz Republic. By adapting a soil erosion model—Universal Soil Loss Equation (USLE)—to local contexts, a number of soil samples were collected during field visits in 2008, 2010 and 2011. At each sample site, a general soil and site description, vegetation description, and soil penetration and water infiltration experiments were undertaken. The research will result in development of a soil loss map to indicate areas with great soil loss risk, estimate average soil loss, and propose conservation measures. The study also uses available data from Soviet times, and free GIS software called SAGA, an effective tool for geoscientific analysis. The study offers implications for policy and practice.
Maksim Kulikov is Graduate Fellow of UCA’s Central Asian Faculty Development Programme. He is a third year PhD student at the Geography Institute of Hamburg University, Germany and also pursuing post-graduate study at the Biology and Soil Institute of the National Academy of Sciences of Kyrgyz Republic. Maksim received his undergraduate degree and M.Sc. in environmental management from the International University of Kyrgyzstan in 2001 and 2003 respectively. Maksim has eight years of working experience in wildlife conservation. He has published and presented his research at various national and international conferences.
The presentation will be conducted in English and / or Russian depending on the audience. Translation is provided upon prior request.