Ministry of Natural Resources and Ecology of the Russian Federation
Federal State Budget Institution
“State Nature Reserve “Wrangel Island””
||689400, Kuvaeva street, 23, Pevek city
Chukotka Autonomous Region
| Fax/Tel.: ||(427-37) 4-15-35|
| Tel.: ||(427-37) 4-15-12|
| Director: ||Alexander Gruzdev;|
HOW TO GET TO THE NATURE RESERVE
The first birds appear on the island only in May, and in September the island becomes deserted again. Because of difficult living conditions, their number in the polar tundra isn't high. It is only by necessity or where living conditions become better that there are congestions of birds, loud and noticeable from far away.
Actually, bird colonies are always bustling with lifein spring. In the bird colonies on the Wrangel Island, there is currently the only large breeding goose colony in Asia. Other white geese populations are found in North America, including populations in the Western Canadian Arctic and on the mainland. The small white goose is the most numerous species of geese of the world fauna.
The population of white geese on the Wrangel Island consists of two subpopulations that have different wintering sites: northern, located in British Columbia (Canada) and southern, situated in California (USA). In Canada and the USA, the white goose is hunted. The nesting colony of white geese on the Wrangel Island is located in the middle reaches of the Tundrovaya River in the intermountain basin. The monitoring of the white goose population on the Wrangel Island has been carried out since 1969.
The state inspectors of the reserve, Oleynikov Igor Petrovich, Konstantin Artamonov, Alexey Chugunovas well as researchers Ulyana Babiy and Pavel Kulemeev have set off for the coming field season recently. In the course of half a year they are to collect by joint efforts the necessary information on key subjects of environmental monitoring, such as polar bears, white geese, musk oxes, the state of colonies of sea birds and water currents, phenologicalobservations and many other things.
The largest specialist in a white goose, VasilyBaranyuk, also went off for the island with the purpose of continuation of monitoring works on the single colony remained in Europe. The current seasonis the 50th one. Its meaning is unique population researches!
A famous Russian photographer, a zoologist PyotrNikolaevich Romanov, joined the team to imprint in a camera lens as much as possible various representatives of avifauna of the reserve, and also tocapture primitive beauty of the island, surprising landscapes and panoramas of the reserve.
We wish all of them a good and successful summer field season!
Photo: from archive of the reserve.
The Reserve Wrangel Island was visited by two skilled Russian kiters from St. Petersburg, Kirill Korabelnikov and Dmitry, the participants of the Transarctic Kite-Expedition
Ekaterina Artamonova, Head of the Department of Environmental Education and Tourism, showed travellers around the reserve.
The guests took interest first of all in the questionsrelated to meetings with polar bears, as at first the kiters had planned to continue their journey and to get to Waelen. So they had been aware of the risks before. But at last they decided to finish their expedition and return home.
Kirill and Dmitry watched a feature film about the reserve, its nature and inhabitants. They also told about their expedition and shared impressions with the employees of the reserve.
Their project "Transarctic Kite Expedition" was launched in 2015. They were going to fly kites across the endless arctic tundra. They wanted to travel without any motor vehicles, from west to east along the Arctic,along the coast of the Arctic Ocean, from the city of Arkhangelsk to the town of Pevek.
The start of the final part of the route took place on March, 29 in the village of Russian Ustye (Yakutia). For 23 days of the travel the kiters had covered a distance ofabout 850 kilometers across the polar tundra regions of Russia and reached the most northern town.
„Every year we came nearer the distination,approximately by 1000 km for a month. Last year the settlement Russian Ustye was reached. It took us amonth, April, to go this part of the trip. In the end we got to Pevek. So,the main task of the expedition has been achieved. All polar tundra has been crossed!” told Kirill Korabelnikov proudly.
Now the kiters are planning an expedition to the Antarctic.
Last Friday, on April 19, the international environmental action "March of Parks 2019" was launched at the information center of the WrangelIsland Reserve. Within the framework of the action, a meeting with the guest of the reserve, a famous travel photographer Pyotr Romanov, was held. For more than 30 years, Pyotr Nikolaevich has been engaged in wildlife photography. „By training I am a zoologist, and a camera has always been my notebook on scientific expeditions.”
„Those photos were documentary evidences of mymeetings with objects of fauna and flora and also illustrated some interesting behavioural moments fromthe lives of particular animal species,” started to tell his story Pyotr Nikolaevich. He told about how hetravels and goes on expeditions and showed some of his unique photos of animals in their natural habitats.He also mentioned some unusual, ñurious and even dangerous incidents from his long field practice.
Pyotr Nikolaevich is called a "portrait" animal photographer.„The most important thing in shootingfilms is to come to the object as close as possible sothat each hair could be seen. Portraying is my element, but I also shoot landscapes and flowers. If I see a beautiful flower, I can even talk to him!” said Pyotr.
The meeting was held in a warm, cordial and positive atmosphere. All participants learned a lot about the nature of our native land and were inspired with positive energy indeed.
Pyotr Nikolayevich has dreamed of visitingWrangel Island for a long time. At last the dream is going to come true. Very soon the photographer with researchers and state inspectors of the reserve will set off for the field season on the Wrangel Island. We will look forward to his coming back!
The most northern town of Russia celebrates the 52nd anniversary!
On April 6, 2019 the reserve "Wrangel Island" tookpart in the celebration of the Day of the Town. The festive action took place in the cinema and concert hall Iceberg. Our reserve presented the photo exhibition "Life on the Island — the Faces of the Reserve.“
The town is famous for achievements of the inhabitants, and the reserve is known for the employees, their scientific works and discoveries as well.
The exhibition presents photos of people living in the toughest polar conditions, far from any civilization.In the pictures you can see those who care for saving fragile Arctic beauty, some moments from the lives of the strong, purposeful, very kind and sympathetic nature lovers.
In spite of everything, they are not indifferent to the nature and future of our planet. They are constantlytrying to pass on as much as possible of their knowledge to the future generations and instill a great love for science and for study of our amazing places! We really appreciate and respect the staff of our reserve, because it is thanks to them that we learn more about the life of a remote Arctic island.
We are also always looking forward to meeting young people who come to our reserve in search of knowledge and answers to questions. We do believe that the interest in the wildlife of the Far North will never disappear!
The bird seldom happens to be a character in the Chukchi fairy tale
The Chaun museum of local lore in Pevek together with the reserve Wrangel Island held an action " The bird seldom happens to be a character in the Chukchi fairy tale" devoted to the World Day of birds.
The raven was the focus of attention.That time it wasn’t consider as a usual bird. Some unusual things concerning ravens were taken into consideration. The guests had an opportunity to reflect on the raven’s life while studying fairy tales, myths and scientific facts.
In the museum hall the collection of items of bone carving and the exhibition of children's drawings withraven as a main subject was presented. In fact, people are accustomed to the ravens that have lived in the neighbourhood for a long time. Moreover, they live everywhere indeed. So, at first sight, they seem to be just the most widespread and common birds. But what are they really like?.
It was Uliana Babij, a researcher of the reserve, who opened the event.
She told a lot about the behaviour of ravens in the native habitat and about their biological features as well. The participants of the discussion learned to what extent this interesting bird is reasonable, cautious and observant.
The conversation was continued by the editor of the Pevek television station, Valeria Khlebnikova. She told her listeners of the raven Kutkh which is the main character of plenty of products of the national creativity and acquainted the audience with Kutkh’simage in modern comics.
Later on the participants could perform in the Chukchi fairy tale The Raven and the Fox.
Having considered ravens in different contexts, such as biology, fairy tales and myths, one can drawthe conclusion that ravens are always inventive,patient and clever.
The Arctic is the territory of dialogue and the ocean of opportunities
On April 9-10, 2019 the 5th International Arctic Forum "The Arctic — the Territory of Dialogue" took place in St. Petersburg. It united the work of public authorities, international organizations, representatives of scientific and business communities, mass media of Russia and of many foreign countries.
The director of the reserve, Alexander RudolfovichGruzdev, took part in the forum, as an expert in the „Warm Meeting session: borders of the Arctic tourism."
The main motto and subject of the forum was "The Arctic – the territory of dialogue. The Arctic is theocean of opportunities". The business program included 33 sessions on three main tracks:
– Coastal territories
– Open ocean
– Sustainable development
The leaders of five Arctic countries - Russia, Norway, Sweden, Finland and Iceland-participated inthe Arctic forum at once. All Arctic neighbours of Russia declared on the importance of ensuring sustainable social and economic development of polar territories, strengthening international cooperation for maintaining natural of the Arctic. In general the planning of joint development of the Arctic and adjacent coastal areas and the Northern Sea Route wasreviewed.
In his speech, the Russian President touched upon the issue of impact of global warming and thedevelopment of the Arctic on the environment,emphasizing that this could turn into a major threat to the whole region.
„We feel sorry for polar bears. But I am speaking figuratively and I mean all the fauna as well. Because due both the warming and the development of Arctic territories the risks are definitely increasing.We have to consider it.”
The President suggested to pay a special attention to ensuring of the balance between industrialdevelopment and saving of the Arctic nature, preservation of its unique, fragile biosystems and, of course, elimination of the damage accumulated during economic activity during last decades. In Russia, since 2012 the cleaning of arctic territories has been kept, so more than 80 thousand tons of wastes have been already removed and utilized.
"We are going to develop the system of especially protected natural territories and reserves as well and first of all, the national park "Russian Arctic". It is important to provide additional measures for development of the civilized ecological tourism and necessary infrastructure here,“ Vladimir Putin noted.
Every year, on April 15, the Day of Ecological Knowledge is celebrated in many countries of the world. Its history dates to 1992. At the UN Conference in Rio de Janeiro on environmental issues a great importance of the environmental education of the population of all countries in the implementation of a strategy for the survival and sustainable development of mankind was noted.
In Russia, this holiday has been celebrated since 1996 on the initiative of public environmental organizations. Actually it’s the starting point to the annual all-Russian action Days of Environmental Protection from Environmental Danger, which ends on June 5th on the Global Day of Environmental Protection.
The main purpose of this holiday is promotion of ecological knowledge, formation of ecological cultureand environmental awareness as well as informing of the general public on affairs concerning the ecological safety and the environmental conditions.
The importance of environmental education in the modern world is no longer in doubt, and in many countries is a priority in training and education. After all, any possible activities for the formation of the ecological culture and careful attitude to the nature is the guarantee of a safe future for all of humanity. In our country, environmental education is one of the priorities as well. The future of the whole planet depends on the ecological culture of the younger generation.It is environmental knowledge that allows a person to realize that harmful and dangerous habits in relation to nature can cause ecological disasters and to avoid destructive consequences.
The reserve “Wrangel Island” is actively working towards that goal. Within 4 months of 2019 many environmental awareness-raising events, dedicated to eco-data, such as - the Day of Nature Reserves and National Parks, the World Day of Marine Mammals, the World Day of Birds and the Earth Day were held.Soon the international campaign March of Parks starts.In the nearest time a series of environmental lessons for school students, that are the part of the action Days of Enviromental Protection, take place in the town of Pevek.
The staff of the Wrangel Island Reserve congratulates everyone on the Day of Ecological Knowledge and thanks everyone who helps the employees of the reserve to instil respect for nature, all living things, promoting environmental knowledge and develop ecological culture in our region, country and so in all around the world.
The International Day of Birds has been held very recently.
The employees of the Wrangel Island Reserve,Ekaterina Artamonova, Head of Departmentof Environmental Education and Development of Tourism, and Uliana Babiy, a researcher, came to congratulate their little friends from the kindergarten Golden Key.
Usually on this day, the staff of the reserve, give a talk about the birds that nest in the reserve. This time, they learned a lot about rare birds living in the neighbourhood, about a kind of sandpipers (Calidrispygmeus).Researcher Ulyana Babiy captivated the children with her story about the sandpiper, a bird included in the Red Book.Actually the species nests only in Chukotka.
Children watched an animated film about sandpipers. They learned which problems the small bird runs into and why its number is dramatically decreasing.The children were asked how could we save sandpipers. At first they were at a loss but soon theycould give full answers. So,they said we had to take care of nature. They told that we mustn’t pollute everything, disturb birds , ruin their nests and take nestlings in the hands etc.
At the end of the event children played sandpipers.Having been divided into two teams and having put on „beaks” in the form of spade on their fingers they competed in „ foraging” like sandpipers do.( The beak of Calidris pygmeys looks like a spade.) Both youngchildren and the staff of the reserve got lots of positive emotions while having a good time.
International Day of Birds
The history of this holiday begins in the USA. It was they who first celebrated the Day in 1884. In Russia, it has been celebrated since 1927. In some years the interest to the celebration used to grow. But from time to time the Day of Birds used to be unpopular indeed. Since 1927 the celebration with up to 5000 children had taken place in all districts of Moscow. Then there was a break during war years. But in 1948 the movement was revived again. The celebration was gaining a national scale more and more. In 1953 about 5 million school students were attracted to participate in it. Thanks to efforts of The Union of Protection of Birds of Russia the holiday was revived in 1999 at last. It is annually celebrated in Russia on April 1 now.
Traditionally the Union of Protection of Birds of Russia chooses the Bird for each year. The numerous events held by the Union are devoted to the Bird. In 2019 an ordinary turtle-dove became the Bird of the year.As for holidays devoted to birds, the Day of Birds is the most popular holiday in the Russian Federation at the moment.
The date of the holiday was chosen not accidentally indeed. It is at that time when migratory birds come back from their winter places and an active period of nesting begins. The nature is filled with singing of tens of bird species.
The main objective of this action is drawing of the public attention to the amazing and diverse world of avifauna, to the importance of careful attitude to it. Nowadays about 10 thousand bird species are known to science.
The Wrangel and Gerald Islands are inhabited by 169 bird species. There are 60 nesting species among them. One of the main avifauna attractions of the reserved area is considered to be a great colony of white geese, the only one in Asia. Tens of thousands sea colonial birds such as diving pigeons, kittiwakes, guillemots, Beringov’s cormorants that are used to nesting on the rocks are of great interest. Actually a large number of different birds inhabit the island as well. They are snowy owls, long-tailed skua gull, eider duck, Pacific brant goose, turnstones, black- bellied plovers, robin sandpipers, black-bellied sandpipers, snow buntings and many others.
The world around us is interesting and various, and the role of such ecological holidays is very big. They direct our attention to the beauty of the wild and primitive nature and remind of laws of its wholeness.
How did the Wrangel Island become a reserve
The first nature protection measures on Wrangel Island were proposed in 1937 by A.I. Mineev, the second chief of the settlement on the island. He adopted a decree to impose a ban on trade of a polar fox in the northern part of Wrangel Island. This part of the island became a reproductive wildlife area. Later on, in 1968 a wildlife area was organized .The main goal of it was the protection of polar bears, walruses, black brents and white geese.
In 1975 musk oxen from the island of Nunivak were brought in, for the purpose of settling of the Wrangel Island. On March 23, 1976 the Council of ministers of RSFSR signed resolution ¹ 189 on the organization of the national park Wrangel Island for the purpose of preservation of rare natural complexes. Wrangel Island is considered to be the first Arctic reserve of Russia, and in 2004 the reserve was included in the UNESCO World Cultural Heritage List.
The main goal of foundation of the reserve "Wrangel Island" is preservation and studying of the natural course of natural processes, species and communities of plants and animals and also typical and unique ecological systems of Wrangel and Gerald Islands and that of the Chukotsky Sea.
The employees of the reserve "Wrangel Island" have been working on preservation and studying of natural diversity of specially protected areas for 43 years. Of course, a lot of things have changed for so many years. First of all new equipment and modern technologies have made qualitative changes to the work of staff of departments for protection and science.So ecological routes have been arranged. In 2017 our information centre was organized. Colourful souvenirs and popular scientific products are annually replenished with new options there.Much educational work has been done by the employees of the reserve since then. Such as annual ecological actions, meetings and events and also informative tourist excursions around the reserve.
We wish all of us health, success, optimism, prosperity and new strength for serving Her Majesty Nature! Happy birthday, favourite Reserve! Growth and prosperity to you!
White or polar bears are large predatory animals, the descendants of brown bears. In 2013 there were 25000 polar bears in the world left, and 5 or 6 thousand of them lived in Russia. All in all, from 19 subpopulations 8 have decreased by now. Ice melting, environmental pollution and poaching have resulted in reduction of their population. On experts' forecasts, by 2050 two thirds of polar bears will disappear.
To draw attention to the problem of preserving their population and to the protection of polar bears from poachers, the International Polar Bear Day was established. It is celebrated annually on February 27th. The initiator of the holiday was the international organization Polar Bears International. On the day, the participants of conferences and seminars discuss the problem of polar bears and that of melting ice in the Arctic. As polar bears live in Russia, Canada, USA, Norway and Greenland, the countries pay a special attention to the protective measures.
Polar bears are animals that fall under the category of the most endangered and fully protected animals. Although the polar bear is a predator, it is still suffering from the destruction of its habitat and from poaching as well. Preying on polar bears in the Russian Arctic has been banned since 1956.On the territory of Russia there are two natural reserves, where polar bears are protected. They are the reserves "Wrangel Island" and "Great Arctic".
The nature reserve "Wrangel Island” was founded in 1976. It consists of the Wrangel and Herald Islands, as well as of 12 sea miles of coastal sea water area. In comparison with the reserve "Great Arctic" ,the reserve "Wrangel Island" has a more northern position. The reserve "Great Arctic" was founded much later, in 1993. It is located in Krasnoyarsk region, on seven areas of the coast of the Arctic Ocean. The reserve "Wrangel Island" is one of the largest zones for breeding of the predator. In other words, it’s a Polar Bear Maternity Hospital consisting from 300 to 500-600 "birthing" dens. In 2004, the reserve "Wrangel Island" was included in the UNESCO World Heritage List.
In 1973, the countries of the Arctic Basin signed the Agreement on the Conservation of Polar Bears . After it had been ratified, it became an international legal basis for protection, study and use of the species. Since 2007, WWF Bear Patrols have been operating in the Russian Arctic. They monitor the coastal of the Arctic together with residents of settlements, employees of coastal weather stations and protected natural areas.
At the moment, the polar bear is in the Red Book of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), Russia, as well as in the Red Book of Chukotka. After all the animal is protected with the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Flora and Fauna (CITES).
What do you know about polar bears?
20 facts about these most incredible animals:
1.A polar bear is the largest warm-blooded predator on the planet. Polar bears can reach a weight of up to 900 kg and a length as long as 3 meters.
2. The closest relatives of polar bears are brown bears. Both species originated from the same ancestor, approximately 600 thousand years ago.
3. It was a huge polar bear, one more subspecies of a polar bear, that used to live in the Arctic in the past. He weighed 1 200 kg and reached a length up to 4 meters.
4.Their hair is thick and does not have pigmentation. Such a good covering keeps warmth better.
5.Their skin is black.
6. If you take a picture of a polar bear using an infrared camera, then only the tip of the nose and vapour coming from it will be visible in the picture, but the bear itself won’t be visible at all.
7.À polar bear swims at the speed of 6,5 km/h.
8. The record swim, more than 600 km, was made by a female bear that was swimming from Alaska across the Beaufort Sea to distant pack ice searching for food.
9. On land, the polar bear can reach speed of up to 40 km / h. But it cannot run at such a speed for long, because of the danger of overheating.
10.Polar bears hibernate for 50-80 days in winter. But it doesn’t happen like that each year. Only pregnant females make dens and fall asleep for winter to produce offspring.
11. The pregnancy of their females lasts for 230-250 days. After that tiny bear cubs weighing 400-750 grams are born.
12. Polar bears are excellent swimmers. For a good swimming they even have special swimming membranes between their fingers.
13. They have an excellent sense of smell. Polar bears smell a seal on the ice at a distance of 32 kilometers.
14. A polar bear doesn’t not freeze thank to a thick subcutaneous layer of fat, up to 10-13 cm.
15.The polar bear’s liver can accumulate a lot of vitamin A. If a person eat at least 100 grams of it, he can die.
16.Polar bears live for about 25-30 years in the wild. In captivity 45 years has been a record polar bear's life expectancy.
17. During the period of severe frosts, when the polar bear falls asleep, he covers his nose with its paw. It is only the paw that produces some heat.
18. The females of polar bears from the southern parts of the Arctic raise their babies for two years, and the females from the cooler part care for their cubs for a year longer.
19. A polar bear does not hunt penguins, because penguins live in the southern hemisphere of our planet, and polar bears in the northern.
20. Polar bears and Antarctica are not incompatible things. Since the habitat of polar bears is only the Arctic which is located in the northern hemisphere of our planet.
On February 19, 1983, the All-Union Ornithological Society of the USSR Academy of Sciences was organized.
At the Constituent Congress on February 19, 1983, it was proposed to consider the founding day of the Ornithological Society as an unofficial orbitologist. The Soviet society was renamed the Menzbirov Ornithological Society, and in 2009 he had another follower - the Russian Society for the Conservation and Study of Birds named after him. M.A. Menzbier.
Currently, the avifauna of the Wrangel Island Nature Reserve has 169 bird species, of which 14 are listed in the Red Book of the Russian Federation and 29 species in the Red Book of Chukotka Autonomous Okrug.
In winter, during the snow period, there are no birds on the territory of Wrangel Island. Only ravens can be found in the winter, owls can also be found during periods of abundance of lemmings, rarely in the former settlements you can see snow bunting .
Nesting on the territory of the reserve has been established for 62 species, including 8 species of seabirds, which is also an impressive number for the Arctic island. Tundra bird species are represented by the basis of the avifauna - lapland longspur, snow bunting, grey plover, ruddy turnstone, red knot, etc.
At the same time, it is known that the nest is also completely uncharacteristic for the Arctic elements, such as ruff, red-necked stint, horned puffin and tufted puffin, for which Wrangel Island is the most northern nesting point. In the colonies of seabirds with a total of up to 250-300 thousand people. nesting individuals, among which are dominated by the thick-billed murre, tystie and black-legged kittiwake.
Most of the permanent colony of snow goose. Our scientists Uliana Babiy, together with other experts on the Anseriforum of Northern Eurasia, Vasily Baranyuk.
The team of the reserve "Wrangel Island" sincerely congratulates Ulyana Babiy, Vasily Baranyuk on her professional holiday, as well as all specialists, ornithologists and bird lovers on the holiday!
Successes to you, health and new unforgettable meetings with our feathered friends!
World Marine Mammal Protection Day (the Day of Whales) is celebrated annually on February 19th.
This day was founded in 1986 when the moratorium on whale hunting came into force, introduced by the International Whaling Commission (IWC). This moratorium is currently in force, and this means that whale hunting and the sale of whale meat are prohibited throughout the world. Currently whaling is allowed only to meet the needs of indigenous population (the so-called aboriginal) and to capture whales for scientific purposes by special permission of Member IWC. First of all, the Day of Whales is intended to attract the attention of the public, representatives of the authorities and all of humanity to the protection of this unique species of animals and all marine mammals in general, of which only 119 species have survived on our planet.The intense and merciless extermination of marine mammals and, in particular, whales, which has been going on for more than 200 years, has a detrimental effect on their numbers - many members of this order are on the verge of disappearing. But they are the most sensitive indicators of the state of the marine ecosystems of the planet and an important link in the food chains of the world oceans, they create the stability of the biological circulation of substances in the ecological system. Therefore, reducing the number of whales and other marine animals leads to a violation of the biological balance in marine ecosystems. Because every extinct species — an irreparable loss — everything that disappears in the animal world disappears forever. Despite the fact that the moratorium on whale fishing is still in effect and the catch of whales is prohibited by the laws of most countries, the destruction of these animals does not stop. Also, a person, by his activity, unfortunately, is not always rational, had long been a negative influence on nature, changing it. For example, large losses to marine mammals cause fishing gear, as well as pollution of the oceans with oil products due to the expansion of the geography of oil production on the sea shelf.
Much information and data on Arctic nature and the history of the Reserve the employees of the Reserve can get from their library.It has been existed for 42 years already. Our researchers as well as public organizations, some scientists and a number of authors contribute to the library fund. .Thank to the people, many books, articles and monographs have been added to the library and it’s replenished with new titles from year to year. By 2018 about 3000 books on science and popular science had been collected on the Wrangel Island. About 2000 books has been taken to the Information Centre of Reserve Wrangel Island to build the fund. The employees of the Reserve sort books, put them on the right shelves, and keep electronic lists. They are also busy with building of the electronic version of library. Readers and visitors could learn about the library’s resourses just by visiting the official site of the Reserve.
Dear colleguages, nature and book lovers ! If you have some spare books on science and popular science as well as fiction on severe Arctic , its plant and animal life and on Reserve Wrangel Island itself, send them electronically or scanned, with a note «For the electronic fund of Reserve Wrangel Island», please. Our e-mail address is email@example.com
Actually, Reserve Wrangel Island is a scientific laboratory. Implementation of scientific researches is one of the main directions of the Reserve. Both Wrangel and Gerald Islands are under special state protection and give a unique opportunity for studying of the natural course of natural processes in undisturbed ecosystems.
At this moment the staff of the scientific department of our reserve is represented by two employees,namely, Ulyana Babiy and Pavel Kulemeev.It’s winter, and now the research department are carrying out a painstaking processing of the data that have been obtained during the field work, as part of long-term monitoring and special population studies. Their work will result in a new volume of Chronicle of Nature and some new scientific publications as well.
In 2,5 months the scientific staff of the reserve will keep working on the island where they will have a new stage of exciting registration work and stationary observations. The period of nesting hasn’t come jet, however, it’s within reach. In fact, snowy owls start nesting in the middle of May. In the beginning of June, passions always run high at the biggest in Europe colony of small white geese. Actually, all seabird colonies are full of life and make a fantastic noise in summer! So, the majority of bird species, such as skuas, sandpipers, sea ducks, will have started breeding season by the middle of June.
They say, science starts with small deeds and steps. Any observations are of great importance for science. Throughout the year, the employees of the protection department register animals and their tracks on routes that are at least 2,000 kilometers long, collecting material on the number and distribution of species in the territory, as well as valuable photos and video materials to help the department of environmental education. The protection department of the Reserve is participating actively in the collecting of monitoring data. In March the forces of state inspectors are planning to register ancestral dens.
From year to year, scientific researches are carried out on the protected island in the framework of scientific cooperation. As a rule, we work together with colleagues from leading domestic and foreign research institutes indeed. For instance, in the framework of the bilateral Russian-American 2016 agreement the staff of the reserve, employees of the All-Russian Research Institute Ecology under the leadership of the head of the Laboratory for the Conservation of Marine and Coastal Ecosystems, PhD in Biological sciences, Stanislav Belikov and his American colleague from the University of Washington, PhD in biology, Erik Reger and his like- minded people annually join forces to organize on the island of Wrangel ground-based surveys of polar bears, as well as collecting material for genetic research using a non-invasive method. Together with Vasily Baranyuk, a foremost authority on white goose, a member of the Working Group on anseriformes in Northern Eurasia, the longest in the history of the reserve population researches aimed at studying the only white goose colony in Eurasia have been conducted.
In addition, 2019 is a jubilee year for us. We have been collecting data for almost 50 years already. Scientific research is an integral part of the Reserve life. Analysis of long-term observation data and new scientific discoveries are necessary for understanding the general state of natural complexes and developing actual recommendations for the conservation of unique natural objects.
Happy holiday, dear colleagues! Best wishes to all scientists, it means to employees of the Wrangel Island Reserve, as well as colleagues from all over Russia who have ever conducted researches in protected areas, especially researchers of the protected areas of Chukotka and the Far East! You are the basis of Russian science!
On February 8, 1724 by the order of Peter the Great the Academy of Sciences was founded in Russia. In 1925 it was renamed into the Academy of Sciences of the USSR, and in 1991 into the Russian Academy of Sciences. In 1999, by the Decree of the President of the Russian Federation dated June 7, the holiday of Russian Scientists was established on this day. Thus the authorities went to the roots of Russian science and the 275th anniversary of the Russian Academy of Sciences was celebrated.
February ,2 The Global Day of Wetlands
The Convention on Wetlands, having an international importance predominantly because of wetlands, the main living places of waterfowls, was signed on February 2, 1971 in Ramsar city (Iran) and now it is known as the Ramsar Convention.
The Convention has been signed by 154 states since then. Russia joined to it on December 26, 1975, and as a result 35 wetlands in the country have an international status at present. The day of signing of the Convention was announced as the Global Day of Wetlands and has been celebrated since 1997.
The events held on that day aim at drawing public and governments’ attention to the value of wetlands for maintaining of stable development of our planet. The term wetlands refers not to lakes and swamps, valleys and river mouthes only , but also to sea coasts and shallows, gulfs and lagoons. Being one of the key types of ecosystems of the planet, wetlands determine the water cycle and a series of important elements, form a global climate, support preservation of biodiversity as well.
On the Wrangel Island there are about 900 lakes that are mainly located on the northern plain,1400 rivers and small streems( rivulets). Marshes cover the area of 10555 hectares. According to the Ramsar Convention the total area of wetlands on the territory of Reserve Wrangel Island runs to 8000 hectares including the most interesting areas. They are the north- eastern part of the Tundra of Academy,the lower part of the river Unexpected( Neozhidanaya) and the delta of the Mamoth river ( Mamontovaya) next to Lake Jack London .These areas are characterized by the widest biodiversity, for instance, by unique plant communities. They are also habitats , feeding and moulting places for more than 80 waterfowls and near- water birds including 32 species of lamellirostral and 55 species of charadriiformes. It is here where Sabine's gulls (Larus sabini),typical for our areas, build their nests, and pacific brant geese and white geese concentrate. Not less than 10 species of sandpipers nest in these areas(Serinus hortulanus, Calidris bairdii etc.)
Preservation of wetlands is the guarantee for biodiversity preservation and for healthy environment as well.
All-Russian Day of reserves and national parks
This event is annually celebrated in our country on 11th of January. It has already become the starting point for significant changes not only in the nature saving work but also in the public perception. On this day in 1917 the first Russian natural reserve was created – Barguzin Reserve, which represents the gold standard of total natural reserve. For many years the wildlife impact on this complex was minimal. The development of events made this reserve to be the ancestor to the system of state reserves in our country, so called a flagship of specially protected territories. Besides, this is the first scientifically research institution in the Baikal.
The humanity is grossly responsible for it: even if people possess the world they have built, that world was built in the place where virgin forests were the only skyscrapers, where the nature did not suffer from outer impact, where everything was in the harmony. Under the human impact into the nature it becomes our direct responsibility to save those few remaining islands of the wild nature. We must keep in mind that creating reserves and natural parks is not only mere tribute to the nature from which we endlessly take but also the essence of the man responsible for his actions.
Such reserves are, first of all, pride of the people living close to them. The number of the reserves in our country is annually increased.
We, Wrangel Island Reserve employees, congratulate with all our hearts all SPNR employees, ecologists, volunteers, partial activists and all the Russians proud of the heritage of our wonderfully beautiful country.
As per Mikhail M. Prishvin, the Russian writer: “To protect nature means to protect the Motherland”.
Opening of the season of actions in Reserve Wrangel Island.
Two ecological events were held on January 18 in the Reserve Wrangel Island. So, the year 2019 has been opened.
The staff of the municipal budgetary educational institution Education Centre conducted an event dedicated to All- Russia Day of Reserves and National Parks.
Students learnt a lot from the lecture on the following questions.
When did the holiday originate?How did it begin? Who protects the environment nowadays?In what way?What specially protected areas are situated on the territory of Chukotka Autonomous Region( Okrug)?
They watched a film about unique objects included in the list of natural heritage of UNESCO. Children also answered employees’s questions very actively.
For example, they knew what is a reserve and what are reserves established for.
After all the results of the municipal New Year tree toys competition Arctic on the tree were announced. Finalists and winners got prizes and certificates in memory of the action. In the evening a meeting with representatives of the initiative group Friends of Ocean took place in the Info Centre of the Reserve.
Tatyana Pridorozhnaya made a speech. She reported to visitors just in simple words on destruction of the marine ecosystem caused by plastic wastes.
Tatyana acquainted guests and town’s residents with the way of life of marine inhabitants by visual demonstration. She showed clearly that being surrounded by plastic they are absolutely not able to distinguish plastic from their food. Children learnt about how much plastic people on the planet are absorbing while eating every day.
Thus the only conclusion to be drawn from the events is as follows. The problem of environmental pollution is global. No person can solve it by himself.
There is one way out only.If everybody contributes in making efforts to cope with all fatal mistakes the mankind have committed, we’ll win together someday!
New book of famous Russian photographer Sergey Gorshkov "Wrangel Island" was published.
With the discount code arctic30 everyone will get 30 % discount from the prices. Same code works with single books and the package of both English books.
The code arctic30 must be filled in the check out before paying and one will get the discount automaticly.
Remember to mention the code arctic30 for your followers on Facebook etc., that is how they will get the 30 % discount.
All-Russian Conference on development of Specially Protected Natural Areas took place in Sochi.
The event for the chiefs of reserves and national Russian Federation parks was held from March, 21 to March, 23, 2019.The Director of the reserve “Wrangel Island,” Alexander Rudolfovich Gruzdev, took part in the conference. During the conference the chiefs of reserves and national parks communicated actively with the department administration, exchanged experiences on the decision of urgent tasks and took part in the specialized training on design management, as well as discussed the ways of achievement of goals that have been programmed in the national project “Ecology”.
According to the passport of the national project “Ecology,” specially protected areas must work during the next 6 years to improve the number of rare and endangered species, to preserve and restore the most valuable ecosystems, to create some objects of infrastructure, including visit centres and ecological paths, and eventually to increase and expand both the number and areas of thespecially protected natural areas in Russia.
During the event, the Minister for Natural Resources and Ecology of the Russian Federation, Dmitry Kobylkin, and the chief of the department of Specially Protected Natural Areas, Alexey Titovsky, were keeping a live dialogue with the directors of specially protected natural areas and answering their questions Most of all, the chiefs of natural territories are concerned about the issues on legislative changes.
Some new standards and regulations for the creation of the protective zones around the reserved areas, changes in the security system of these zones, the questions of infrastructure projects which can infringe the boundaries of the areas, the necessity of increasing of wages of the employees, the timely financing of the fire-awareness training are the main questions usually asked by the representatives of the natural areas. The colleagues from reserves expressed their wishes to the Ministry concerning importance of timely and sharp feedback.
In his speech to the participants of the Conference, Dmitry Kobylkin emphasized the necessity to set up, maintain and ensure reliable security. According to the Minister, the second urgent task is the development of new, attractive, original approaches to the development of the ecological tourism. The third task is the fulfillment of the order of the President of the Russian Federation on audit of all reserved territories of the country and their cadastral registration.
He noted as well that till 2024 the Ministry for Protection of the Environment and Natural Resources is to create 24 new reserved areas so that the stream of eco-tourists would increase from 4 to 8 million people.
The letter found its addressee.
Nikita Melkozerov, a student of Yekaterinburg lyceum ¹ 130, received a letter from a polar bear at last, on Umka’s birthday.
The letter that he had sent to the reserve had been travelling more than 10 months. Here is a long-awaited response to the letter from his white friend.
March 1, in the information center of the reserve "Wrangel Island", the event "Polar Bear - King of the Arctic", dedicated to the International Polar Bear Day.
The little guests of the reserve immediately became interested in cutting out the main character of the event. While the young guests cut out the white bears from the templates, painted the muzzle and tried to make them kind and cheerful, the adults got acquainted with the books about the largest predator.
At the event, residents of the city expanded their view of the life of a polar bear in the Far North; we got acquainted with the habits and distinctive features of the predator, differences in the appearance of the male and female polar bears, discussed the causes of melting polar ice and the detrimental effect of human activity on the polar bear population, as well as watched with interest the video about polar bears life.
But this is not all news related to the polar bear day.
The polar bear has more friends!
In the city of Yekaterinburg, students of Yekaterinburg Lyceum No. 130 prepared drawings of polar animals and made an entire exhibition about it. On February 27, a thematic lesson devoted to the King of the Arctic was held for the lyceum students. Pupils learned a lot of new and interesting things about the polar bear: where it lives, what it eats, features of the animal's structure, its habits, and what threatens the polar bear. The lesson was accompanied by a colorful presentation of "36 amazing facts about polar bears", provided by the reserve "Wrangel Island".
And in the corridor of the Lyceum there was an informational exhibition with drawings of students devoted to the International Polar Bear Day.
Tourism to Vrangel Island in figures.
More than 1500 foreign tourists visited the island during the last six seasons. Mainly tourists came from Germany, Australia, Switzerland, the USA and France. However, the number of Russian tourists does not cede: there are 139 our compatriots who preferred Arctic. Just to list few countries the tourists come to Vrangel Island from to enjoy Russian exotics, there are Luxemburg, Mauritius, Mexico, the Netherlands, New Zeeland, Singapore, Taiwan.
Ecological tourism is becoming more and more popular
More than 1500 foreign tourists visited the island duriThe 27th of September is the International Tourism Day.
The summer tourist season in the Reserve has started July 16 and lasted till August 29. This year 6 tourist boats have moored to the pier of the Reserve. More than 300 tourists from over the world Russia inclusive have explored endless ices of Arctic with great interest.
In total, the tourist program of the Reserve offers 9 ecological excursion routes across the island.
On-ground tourist groups, within the framework of the prima cruise ships, experienced and enjoyed the route “Somnitelnaya Bay – Tundrovy Peak – Drem-Khed” by all-wheel drive vehicle “Trekol”. Such a kind of tourism is notable with close contact with the nature without interfering into it. The tourists could sight musk buffaloes – coevals of the mammoth who continued inhabiting the island even 6 thousand years after the official date of their extinction, snow goose regular nesting spot, admire the beauty of the Red Book snowy owl, catch on video playing blue fox littling. The most delighting for that cold summer was the blossoming tundra.
While crossing ice fields the tourists rather often faced the symbol of the island – the polar bear, - in its natural living place. The curious Arctic animal was many times caught on cameras by the tourists impressed by its size and beauty. The Pacific walrus, fjord seal, bearded seal, for which the sea ice is a favorite recreation place, were also met while floating the sea.
Now the tourist season is closed but next year the island, the UNESCO World Heritage Site, will open it again for those who appreciate the fragile beauty of the Arctic nature.
Save Polar Bear
The International Scientifically-Practical Conference “Polar Bear Universe” and the 10th session of the Russian-American Committee took place in Egvekinot settlement of the Iultinsk Region of the Chukotka Autonomous Region within the framework of the inter-governmental agreement on protection of the Chukotka-Alaska Polar Bear Population.
Scientists reported on the up-to-date achievements in the field of the Chukotka-Alaska Polar Bear Population research. The reports on analyzing new biological data of the population state, its quantity and habitation areola borders change due to the climatic fluctuation were debriefed.
< Presented at the reports biological, satellite, meteo- and hydrological data and ice maps allowed identifying in details the red-book animal habitation areola borders in the Chukchee Sea and adjoining equatorials, their number and other parameters.br>
Alexander R. Gudsev, Ph.D.Biology, the Director of the Reserve, also participated in this work.
Tourists arrive at the Reserve Bays
The reserve started to receive the first in this year touristic boats (in particular, the first run of “Professor Khromov”). Tourists from different countries (New Zeeland, the Netherlands, Australia, the Great Britain, Germany, France, Spain, Italy, Norway, Sweden, the USA, Slovenia and Russia) have visited Vrangel Island North Reserve.
Save your planet – you will never have another one.
Last week Vrangel Island Reserve held several events dedicated to the Egologist Day and International Environment Defense Day. On the 6th of June “Save your planet – you will never have another one” event took place in the information center of the Reserve. The meeting started with the history of these special days appearing and gradually faded into an ecological game. Attendants answered different questions and participated in different competitions. A little bit later Olga Procopenko, an ornithologist, Pavel Kaurov, an ecologist and Julia Makarenko, a third-year student, joined the event as specially invited guests representing North Biological Problems Institute (FEB RAS, Magadan). They take part in an expedition to study synanthropic population of eiders and other birds in the vicinity of Pevek and Apapelguino settlement. Olga Prokopenko fascinatingly told about the life of the feathered representatives of the Anseriformes, about eiders and about the expedition itself in her presentation “Arctic Birds and Their Live in Pevek”. Pavel Kaurov shared interesting facts about ecological concerns in Arctic, in particular, in Chukotka and the way these concerns affect the flora and fauna.
Artamonova Ekaterina, the Head of Ecological Enlightening Department of the Reserve, held an event “Learn your region, love and care it”, dedicated to the International Environment Defense Day and Ecologist Day, in the children garden “Golden Key” on the 8th of June. From that event children got to know where those Days originated from and their purpose, what ecology was and about care for nature. The children participated in different interesting and useful competitions and games addressed to the environment protection and Red Book animals and plants.
International Day of biological diversity
The 22th of May is International Biological Diversity Day. However this unique Day has a sad tinge, for only in Russia there are more than 65 animal specious which are extinct or close to being extinct, let alone the rare floral forms. The scientists say the major cause of the extinction is human activity in the earth which upsets the biological balance. People treat the planet recklessly, have consumer attitude to its resources. Early or later such an attitude will bring to tragic consequences. Peopling new territories, meliorating natural water reservoirs, cutting forests, manufacturing, hunting rare floral forms – all this irrevocably affects the nature. Upsetting biological balance is equally dangerous for the flora, fauna and human population. It is high time that we cared for the ecology and took improving measures. Treat the nature carefully.
This year the Museum Night has come a week earlier – on the 12th of May and coincided with two ecological dates – Ecological Enlightenment Day and World Day of Migrating Birds. The state natural reserve “Vrangel Island” also participated in this Night. Ekaterina Artamonova, the Head of the Ecological Enlightenment Department, told about the migrating bird of Chukotka and Vrangel Island, about the difference between sea and tundra birds, owl male and female, about the harm of domestic waste, in particular, plastic. As well a documentary record on the realm of birds was demonstrated. That record was a unique one as the birds were shot at flight without any special effect. It took three years and five hundred specialists from all over the world to make that movie with the help of flying devices.
As a part of that event there were an excursion to the depository, narrating on and demonstrating the museum collection documents, plunge-into exhibition dedicated to the reindeer-breeding people, their traditions, dances, holy-fire gaining and evil spirits ward off by knocking at the tembrel named yarar, a concert of lyric verses and songs by Soviet and Russian authors performed by Tatiana Dolzhikova, Alexandra Chigrina and Irina Mishina.
The second spring ride to Arctic island
Apart from inspectors guarding and monitoring the Island all the year round, the research scientists start their work only in spring. On Friday, April 27th Uliana Baby, a research scientist of the reserve, and Basil Baranyuk, the snow goose major scholar, started off for Island to continue monitoring the only remaining is Eurasia colony. The snow goose has been monitoring since 1969, and the current season is the 49th. This is a unique population research.
The work in the island is humming since the beginning of the spring: in the middle of March Gennady Fedorov, Vladimir Mazanov and Yuri Balantsev, the employees of the Security Department, and Pavel Kulemev, a new employee, as headed by Alexander Grusdev, the Reserve Director, started off for the Island. This season Pavel is to monitor the population of the hoofed, and count fin-footed to the possible degree. All of them will stay in the Island till October. In March and April generic dens have already been revised. There are so many plans whereas the season only seems to be long. During this half a year the scientists by means of joined efforts collect information on the key objects of the monitoring such as the polar bear, snow goose, moskus buffalo, sea bird colonies, water courses, phenological observations and many others.
Anastasia Petukhova, the Methodist, also joined the group to monitor the condition of historical-cultural and touristic objects. In the hunter house at Somnitelnaya base, where Ivan Petrovich, an island aborigine, lived, it is planned to create and equip an informational center to enable tourists and guests to see the housekeeping and day-to-day life of the island inhabitants in the middle of the XX century. In 2018 there are totally seven touristic boats to anchor in the island aquatic area.
May our colleagues have a successful field season this year.
Wrangel Island state natural reserve has just finished the season of accepting tourist ships. Read more
UNESCO mission had visited «Wrangel island» nature reserve. Read more
Report about the trip to Wrangel Island in 2014