Burbank, CA – The AYF Burbank “Varak” Chapter hosted a centralized educational on July 22nd entitled “Wildlife in Armenia” given by unger Kevork Babayan. Several chapters attended the educational to learn more about the natural biodiversity present within Armenia and its surrounding regions.
The educational started off by introducing the Caucasus Ecoregion as a whole. The varying topography of the region, which includes the Greater and Lesser Caucasus Mountain Ranges, the Southern Caucasian Uplands, and the Transcaucasian Depression, allows for the diverse grassland steppe, marsh, forest, and alpine ecosystems. This variation of habitat is what makes the Caucasus a “hotspot,” meaning it has a higher level of plant and animal diversity compared to the neighboring regions of Europe and the Near East.
Also highlighted in the educational were the various protected areas found within Armenia. Sevan National Park, as well as Khosrov, Dilijan, and Shikahogh State Reserves, are the most vital for habitat and species protection. Maps of the reserves were used to show their respective locations.
The final half of the educational introduced some of the diverse animal life found with Armenia. Various images depicted species such as the Armenian Rock Lizard, Syrian Brown Bear, Armenian Gull, Pallas’s Cat, Sevan Trout (Ishkhana Tsoog), and Armenian Mouflon. A species of significance was the Nearer Asian or Caucasus Leopard with only about 5-8 individuals found in Armenia as well as 5-7 estimated in Karabakh.
The lecture, along with questions from those attending, helped expose members to some of the biodiversity found within Armenia.
Founded in 1933, the Armenian Youth Federation (AYF) has grown to become the largest and most influential Armenian American youth organization; with chapters throughout the United States and affiliated organizations around the world. Inspired by our past and motivated by the needs of the future, the AYF actively strives to advance the social, political, educational and cultural awareness of all Armenian youth.