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The Caucasus is one of the most biologically rich regions on Earth. Home to an unusually high number of endemic plant and animal species, it ranks as one of  the world’s biodiversity “hotspots” according to both Conservation International and WWF.

Formed by the isthmus between the Black and Caspian Seas, the Caucasus ecoregion is a biological crossroads, where plant and animal species from Europe, Central Asia, the Middle East, and North Africa mingle with endemic species found nowhere else on earth.

About the size of France, the hotspot spans 500,000 square kilometers including Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia, as well as small portions of Russia, Iran and Turkey. Amazingly, this relatively small area holds a number of different landscapes from semi-desert to high altitude tundra, from alpine meadow to deep forest.