Eurasian Central Asian Shrubland

The Central Asian shrublands are separated from the shrublands of Persia by the Garagum and Qizilqum Deserts of Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan and extend north along the eastern edge of the Caspian Sea through the countries of Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan and the Russian Federation. The ecotype is bordered to the east by the Tian Shan Mountains that grade from an arid shrub steppe at the base to forested meadows at the upper elevations. Saltworts (Chenopodiacea) and sagebrush (Artemisia) form the major shrub communities of this ecotype and soils are a heterogeneous mix of clay alluvial, alluvial-delta, and sandy desert types. Grass species grade from northern steppe species in the North to low and tall savannoide vegetation in the South. Precipitation in this region is highly varied and tightly correlated with elevation, where mountains in the region may receive annual precipitation of 300-600 mm (12-24 in) and low elevation basins may receive 70-125 mm (3-5 in).