Mouteh Wildlife Refuge

Mouteh Wildlife Refuge

Mouteh Wildlife Refuge is located in Mouteh village in northwest of Isfahan. Mouteh Wildlife Refuge is a home of Goitered gazelle in Iran.

Mouteh wildlife refuge covers a vast area including mountains, hills, meadows and plains. The highest altitude of the region is about 3000 meters and the shortest is about 1500 meters above sea level. The difference between the highest and lowest altitude and the diversity in geographical features makes Mouteh a special habitat for plants and animals.

Goitered gazelle
Goitered gazelle

Mouteh Climate

Mouteh Wildlife Refuge, although situated in Iran plateau, has a cold or semi-arid climate. The average minimum and maximum temperatures over a 25-year period are -8.5 and 30.8 degrees Celsius, respectively. The absolute minimum and maximum temperatures during the same period are -29.4 and 37.4 degrees Celsius, respectively. Yet, the average annual rainfall is 249.16 mm and maximum is 336.12 and minimum is 195.77 mm. However, 45.05 percent of the rainfall falls during the winter months.

Mouteh Refuge
Man-made Water pool in Mouteh

Vegetation and Plant Life

Mouteh as a part of Irano-Turanian region has 478 plant species belonging to 240 genera and 53 families. You can find shrubs such as Artemisia, Astragalus, Alhagi, Prangos, Prunus scoparia , Pistacia terebinthus and Acantholimon.

Animals in Mouteh

There are 25 mammal species, 88 bird species, 25 reptile species and one amphibian species have been identified and recorded in this area.

Mammals

Urial also known as the arkars or shapo, Wild goat, leopard, Sand cat, Pallas’s cat, fox, Wolf, hyenas, jackals, Pika, Porcupine, Gerbil etc. The most important feature of Mouteh Wildlife Refuge is goitered or black-tailed gazelle.

Mouteh Wildlife Refuge
Urial also known as the arkars or shapo
Mouteh Wildlife Refuge
Herd of Boars in Mouteh Wildlife Refuge
Mouteh Wildlife Refuge
Hedgehog at night

Birds

Iran is rich in term of Birds. But, Mouteh is limited birdwise. Despite its arid region, Mouteh is a home to 5 species of birds belonging to 2 genera and 2 families have been identified so far. Golden eagle, Falcon, Eurasian hoopoe, Partridge and Bustard are some of the birds you can see in this area.

Owl in Iran
Owl in Mouteh
Mouteh Wildlife Refuge
Eagle in Mouteh Wildlife Refuge

Reptiles

So far, 5 species of reptiles belonging to 1 genus and 3 families have been identified in Mouteh: Desert monitor, Rough-tailed Gecko, Agamas, royal snake, False cobra, and Macrovipera lebetina, etc.

Snake in mouteh
Snake in Mouteh
Agamas - Iran Wildlife
Agamas – Iran Wildlife

Where is Mouteh Wildlife Refuge?

It is at a joint border of Markazi Province and Isfahan Province. This wildlife refuge, nearly 205 thousand hectors, is surrounded by several villages.

  • North: Delijan, Nimvar and AtashKooh Village with its Sassanid Fire Temple (AtashKooh Fire Temple)
  • Northeast: Rabat-e Tork and Hastijan along the Isfahan-Tehran highway
  • Northwest: Gol Cheshmeh and Yekeh Chah villages
  • East: Varkan Village
  • West: Golpayegan and Golshahr
  • South: Laybid village, Hasanrobat and Lushab

How to get Mouteh Wildlife Refuge?

Drive south from Tehran. There two ways to get there from Tehran. First route: Take Tehran-Qom Highway. When you get to Qom, drive westward toward Salafchegan. Then drive south to Delijan. Second route:  Take Tehran-Saveh Highway. Pass Saveh and continue your drive toward Salafchegan and Delijan.

Once you are in Delijan, you can take one of the following route;

Mouteh Wildlife Refuge Map
Mouteh Wildlife Refuge map

Green Route: Drive from Delijan toward southwest. Pass Nimvar to get to Khomein. Next, drive south to Golpayegan. Next, take the Red Route to the Wildlife Refuge.

Blue Route: If you are driving to Mouteh from Isfahan, pass Shahin Shahr. Drive toward northwest to Golpayegan. Next, take the Red Route to the Wildlife Refuge.

Mouteh Wildlife Refuge Permission

This area was first introduced and registered by the Supreme Council of Hunting and Hunting in 1968. However, in 1990 it was officially turned into the Wildlife Refuge. Isfahan Department of Environment is in charge of it now. If you want to acquire Mouteh entrance permission, you have to contact Isfahan Department of Environment. You can contact me to get the Permission.

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