- Kazakhstan's current population is 18,157,122
- Capital is Astana
- Kazakhstan is the largest landlocked country in the world.
- Russia pays more than 100 million per year to rent an area of 3,700 square miles 6,000 square kilometers around the Baikonur Space Center in central Kazakhstan.
- The golden eagle is the national bird of Kazakhstan.
The flag of Kazakhstan is light blue which symbolizes the country’s skies and hopes for the future. In the center, an eagle flying beneath a golden sun symbolizes freedom. The pattern on the left side represents the people of Kazakhstan.
Land and Climate
Kazakhstan is located in central Asia and is four times the size of the state of Texas. Kazakhstan has mountains in the south and east, forested hills in the north and desert and semi desert terrain in the south and west. The central part of the country is a grassy treeless plain called a steppe which takes up about a third of the country.
Kazakhstan’s major rivers include the Irtysh, Syr Darya, and Ural. The biggest lakes are Lake Balkhash and Lake Alakol. In the west is the oil rich Caspian Sea, and along the southern border is the Aral Sea. Once large and healthy the Aral Sea shrunk by about half during the Soviet era because much of the water was used for farming and industry. Unfortunately many of Kazakhstan’s rivers and lakes are polluted because the chemicals used in farms and factories have ended up in the water.
Winters are long and harsh in the north. Temperatures can dip to -40°F -40°C and windstorms are common. Southern winters are shorter and less harsh, but temperatures during the hot, dry summers can reach 104°F 40°C.
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