Katlanovo was named by the Turks, who used to call this region “Kaplan”, which means a tiger. The orthodox population called it “Katlan” instead of “Kaplan”. After some time the word was modified into Katlanovo or Katlanovski Banji (Katlanovo Resorts).
Katlanovo area takes up the surface of 5.542 hectares. There’s an open crack that originates from the neo-tectonic era, and through this crack the thermal waters rise. Even during the Roman period this place was known for small, open-air pools.
In 1965, Katlanovo mud, in accordance with the “Law of protection of the natural rarities” was put under protection program. This special reserve (botanical, ichthyology and ornithology) is mentioned in documents of historical value as an object with fortification value, because its function of barrier for crossing of the Taor Canyon. The charters published on the occasion of renovation of the Monastery dedicated to saint Gjorgji-Gorga, located by the flow of river Serava, it has been said: “Katlanovo mud is presented to the church St. Gjorgjija, along with the fish and game hunting grounds”. The charter also reads: “Whoever enters the hunting grounds without the prior’s permission shall be damned by God and shall pay 8 “perpers” to the country safe”.
This leads to a conclusion that even in the 11th century, the Katlanovo mud usage had been regulated with formerly gained permission by the church authorities, and any other usage was followed by a stated punishment. The great fish quantity contained in Katlanovo mud has helped the village folks to live easily through the winter, by hunting fish, to store a few barrels of salted fish at home. Before melioration took place, Katlanovo mud used to be a favorable stopping by-the-way resort for migratory birds that would come here before the winter starts, exactly from the north in the southern direction – Salonika, and farther to the northern part of Africa.
In the spring time, the migratory birds, which fly in the direction of the northern Europe, come back to the same place where they nest, then again through the wide Katlanovo mud, they would stop by and take a rest. When the rest is over, led by their inborn instinct to come back to where they came from, fly in the direction of the northern Europe. A flock of small floaters (Anas platyrchyncha) have spent the winters in the mud of Katlanovo and Arachinovo, till recently, and their number at some points reached more than 2000, this included: 1500 cranes (Grus grus), grey herons (Ardea cinerea), red herons (Ardea purpurea), the plain floating reed bird (Anas platyrhynchos), the “shamak” goose (Anser anser) that also does the nesting. From the birds of prey, the puddle kite (Cirkus aeruginosus) circles above the reeds, it is the biggest enemy of the swampy birds, and the big number of storks (Ciconia ciconia).
The past times read that the Skopje ravine once was a habitat for 240 bird types, 160 of which were nesting birds, while more than 60 bird types have done nesting in the swamp. The former connection that existed on the relation from the river Vardar to the little lake, which is surrounded by reeds, was interrupted which pretty much disabled the carp fish (Cyprinus caprio) to do its spawning in this river, the water that is in the borders of the protected locality.