Amazing Zagros Mountains Facts That Are Highly Recommended

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Outdoor & NatureLearn more
One of the most interesting Zagros mountains facts is that that Zagros mountain range is around 990 mi (1593.2 km) long.

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If you're looking for a fantastic travel destination full of natural wonders, look no further than the Zagros mountains.

The Zagros mountains originate from northwestern Iran, running through the western border areas of Iran, and offer everything from snow-capped peaks to lush green valleys. Apart from Iran, these mountains also cover a part of Northeastern Iraq and the Southeast of Turkey.

The Zagros mountain range spans the entire length of the southwestern and western Iranian plateau and eventually ends at the Strait of Hormuz. Interestingly, the Zagros fold, which gave rise to the Zagros mountains, was formed due to a collision between the Arabian Plate and the Eurasian plate. The Zagros region is an integral part of oil located in the Persian Gulf as they run along its north coast. According to scientists, the tectonic history of the Zagros mountain rocks played a pivotal role in trapping petroleum underground. Did you know, back in time, these mountains defined the borders between Persian and Ottoman empires and the Parthian and Roman empires?

Ecosystems And Wildlife

The Zagros range is primarily covered by pistachio, oak trees, steppe vegetation surrounding extensive grounds, and temperate broad-leaved forests when it comes to vegetation cover. Persian Oak is believed to be the most important one of all plant species in this ecosystem.

There are various kinds of ecosystems in the Zagros mountains, but the mountains primarily experience a semi-arid temperate climate. The high-level institutions have defined the ecosystem of the Zagros mountains as the 'Zagros Mountains forest steppe ecoregion. The Zagros mountains experience a highly arid climate during the summer, but the winter season days are extremely cold, with substantial temperature drops.

The Zagros mountains receive the most rainfall during the early spring and winter seasons, with average rainfall between 16-31 in (40.64-78.74 cm). The Zagros mountains are also home to various plants and animals. Let's take a closer look at some flora and fauna native to these mountains in Iran.

Flora And Fauna

The Zagros Mountains of Iran are home to a wide variety of plants and animals, but in recent times the mountain range has suffered from deforestation and overgrazing. As a result, protected areas such as The Mooteh Protected Area and Arjan Protected Area have been established to preserve the rapidly decreasing flora and fauna in the forests of the Zagros mountains.

Almost half of the forest of the Zagros mountains is covered by the Persian Oak species. Many other plant species are only found in the Zagros mountains, including the likes of Tulipa kurdica, Iris barnumiae, and Allium iranicum. Moving on to the fauna of this mountain region, various kinds of mammals such as brown bears, wild goats, wolves, and leopards are spotted in significant numbers in this region. Interestingly, these goats could easily survive on dry grass, which allowed Neolithic people back in the day to farm on the foothills of this mountain.

Did you know, during the 1800s, the Asiatic lion lived in the forest region of the Zagros mountains? It is now extinct and can no more be found? Various kinds of birds like the black vultures and partridges also live in this region. You can also spot the golden eagle living at significant elevation in the Zagros mountains. Various endangered animal species such as Basra reed-warbler, Luristan newt, and the striped hyena live in this mountain region of Iran.

The wild goats found in the Zagros mountains in northern Iran are integral to the mountain's ecosystem.

Type And Age Of Rock

The Zagros mountains are made up of limestone and sedimentary origin. Near the mountain top, one can find paleozoic rocks along the main fault of the Zagros mountains. At the same time, on both sides of the main fault, one can discover Mesozoic rocks.

Interestingly, the Eurasian plate and Arabian plate collision led to stress in the Earth's crust. When combined with erosion led to the removal of softer rocks such as siltstone and mudstone. Interestingly, the linear ridges that one can spot at the Zagros mountains of Iran were formed due to differential erosion. Did you know the oldest rocks found in the Zagros mountains date back to the Precambrian period speaking leaps and bounds about the age of these mountain ranges in Iran?

Visiting The Zagros Mountains

Zagros mountains are one of the most commonly visited places by tourists traveling to Iran. These mountains run from the northern part of Iran to the southeast of Turkey.

People who visit these mountains are attracted by the fact that the mountains help in changing the climate of the nearby locations drastically. People can travel a few kilometers around these mountains and experience varying climates.

Tourists believed that the best way to visit the Zagros mountains is by reaching Shiraz city and then going for a two-hour drive from there to the mountain base. From here, you can now trek on the mountain and also experience river trekking in between the mountains. At an elevation of 14,465 ft (4408.9 m), Mount Dena is the highest peak of the Zagros mountains, which often fascinates people traveling to these ranges.

Terrain In The Zagros Mountains

Irrespective of the ranges being called mountains, the region experiences a varied terrain due to the extensive folding of the tectonic plates in the past. Let's take a look at what kinds of terrain comprise the Zagros mountains.

Most of the area is covered by plateaus and lowlands, which are occasionally interrupted by the Shiraz range and the salt marshes, flatlands at times. At the same time, while visiting these mountains, you can come across a number of seasonal as well as traditional rivers which flow through these mountains. These rivers generally flow into the Lake of Jaz Murian or the Gulf of Oman.


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