|“Vordan Karmir” state reservation was established in 1987. It is in Armavir Marz. Its area includes a small part of salt marsh ecosystems (the square is 217 hectares). It is between villages Arazap, Argavand and Sovetakan. The main goal of the reservation is the protection and stable-use of Ararat plain halophyte (salt marsh) exhibit ecosystems, their flora and fauna.|
The special object of reservation protection is the endemic valued insect Ararat Cochineal, which lives on the plants Aeluropus and Phragmites.
The Ararat Cochineal during thousand years was a source of natural red paint carmine in Armenian upland. This paint was high appreciated in historical epoch not only in Armenia , where it was “King” paint, but in the Middle East and in Europe too. Having some advantage over the nowadays using synthetic paints (high stability, safety for people) the carmine can be used in food, light industry and in other spheres today also. Because of reclamation of salt marsh lands during these last ten years is safely only 217 hectares from 11000 hectares was before occupied by the Ararat Cochineal insect. So is very important the significance of this reservation for the protection of this insect. The Ararat Cochineal is include into the Former Soviet Union “Red Book” and in future is provided to include into the “Red Book” of Armenia.
It is obviously that for the existing of insect population is very important to protect the whole ecosystem. The reservation is the exhibit of Ararat plain halophyte (salt marsh) ecosystems. There are protected some of rare plants: Nitraria, Kalidium, Tamarix and etc.
Though the different groups of the fauna is investigated non-uniformly, but on the basis of existing data is obviously that the fauna of the reservation is also original and includes some rare and endemic species. For example there are several species of endemic beetles, e. g. araxian ladybird, Armenian flee-beetle, etc.
The “Vordan Karmir” state reservation is the last shelter of almost disappeared Ararat plain salt marsh associations, which protection has a great significance for the biodiversity protection in international level too.