Binegadi Fauna and Flora Deposit

Photo in the Public Domain.

"Binegadi" 4th Period Fauna and Flora Deposit is part of the Tentative list of Azerbaijan in order to qualify for inclusion in the World Heritage List.

Binagadi Asphalt Lake has provided knowledge about the fauna and flora of the Pliocene. Remains of animals and plants that were trapped in the tar have been found at the bottom of this ancient lake. This hilltop cluster of tar pits was discovered in 1938.

Map of Binegadi Fauna and Flora Deposit

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The coordinates shown for all tentative sites were produced as a community effort. They are not official and may change on inscription.

Community Reviews

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Netherlands - 23-Apr-24 -

Today I visited this location from Baku by busses and minibuses plus unexpected walks as the bus I needed (bus 134) does not seem to go at the moment. I visited the lake at the coordinates the other review mentions (40.467668, 49.801180). The approach is not the nicest as one has to walk through a garbage dump to reach the shore. The lake itself doesn't look like asphalt, but rather somewhat clean water. The large amount of vegetation and the clean (bar the rubbish) soil also makes me wonder whether there was any asphalt here in recent years. After a quick look and a few photos I went towards the lake hotel and then approached the Keyraki mud volcano from the back side, There are several paths up. I chose the first one and enjoyed looking at the crater and mud flows of the 2017 eruption. The wind at the top was very strong and I really had to pay attention to not fall into a crack in the surface of the vulcano. I really enjoyed the views from the top. The Mirzaladi and Masazir salt lakes were very clearly visible, as was Binagadi. Also didn't look like a tar pit from the top. However, past the lake hotel I was smelling a very strong asphalt smell. Maybe a lot of it had been pumped off? No idea. While it's not the most interesting location overall I really did enjoy this trip from Baku, and the mud volcano.


Switzerland - 01-Sep-18 -

Binegadi Fauna and Flora Deposit (T) by Walter

As for most Azeri TL, not much information is available about “Binagadi" 4th Period Fauna and Flora Deposit.  This site is a lake in the northern suburb of Baku, area of a tar pit (or asphalt lake), in which, for thousands years, animals and flora have been trapped in the tar. Deposits from the Pleistocene where found here covered by thick layer of a petroleum : some 50 000 bones of various animals, of which 40 specimen of mammals (wolf, hyena, bulls, bear and rhino), 120 species of birds (swan, crow, hawks, geese), 2 species of reptiles and one specimen of amphibians, as well as 107 species of insects and 22 species of vegetation relics have been recovered. Most of those remains are in display in the Baku Natural History Mueseum.
Binagadi can be compared to  Rancho-La-Brea Pitch in California.

I visited this TL with a rental car from Baku, but it can be easily accessed by bus. The place is not signposted at all, and even after numerous research on the internet, I am not exactly sure of its exact location (the best I could find is the south-east corner of the Binagadi lake : approx. coordinates 40.467668, 49.801180). The lake can be seen from the road to Binagadi settlement (called 1st Madan on google maps) and approched in the west on a road to a stange building (with many security guards, so I did not stay long), or on the east from a dirt road. In the backdrops is a mud volcano. The area is not of any interest, and the tar pit can only be guessed from far. The view on the lake and the mud volcano is nice however, but not really worth the effort to get there.

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Full Name
"Binegadi" 4th Period Fauna and Flora Deposit
Paleontology - Non-hominid fossils
1998 Added to Tentative List

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Binegadi Fauna and Flora Deposit (T)
WHS 1997-2024