There are more than 60 fresh-water and salt lakes on the territory of the reserve. The main reservoirs are - closed Lake Tenghiz and open Korgalzhin. These are important nesting sites for millions of migrating birds. The lakes are almost completely covered with dense thickets of reeds and cat/tails. They feed on Nura River and groundwaters. During spring, the Kulanutpes River provides freshwater. Stream pools dividing the Lake Korgalzhyn have separate names: Sultan-Keldy, Yesey, Kokai, Zhamankol and Kazatskoye.