NEWS ARCHIVE: NOVEMBER 2012

November 30, 2012 Website "TUT.BY" Crossings for bison are appeared in Belovezhskaya Pushcha, but the territory of Poland is close for animals


Photo by Igor Byshnev
Three crossings for bison have been equipped in the central part of the National Park "Belovezhskaya Pushcha". They make their life easier and help the animals freely negotiate the drainage channels. TUT.BY learned this from the National Park.

Such crossings will prevent the death of bison, especially of young animals, which were sometimes injured in the spring from getting into the channels filled with water. Crossings were built quickly - started in October and finished now, the experts of the National Park say.

However, there are yet dangerous places for bison in the forest - in the southern part of the Park. So, "if funding will be continued, we will make crossings there as well." According to experts, the need is for another 3 to 5 ones.

As to crossings that would allow bison to move from the Belarusian part of the National Park in Poland, there are no plans for them yet, despite the fact that their designs have been developed a long time ago - about 5 years ago. "The very idea of such crossings states for over 30 years", added in the National Park. "But it is as long as their projects are suspend."

The only wish of the National Park to open these crossings is not enough. So "the situation can be turned to refuse the idea of implementing these projects at all."

"They will definitely not open in the near future,"
said in the National Park. "In addition, it is still unclear whether it will be safe. The border guards have yet to connect to this issue."
November 30, 2012 Website "The State Nature Protection Establishment "The National Park "Belovezhskaya Pushcha"" Seminar on tourism

A seminar for the purpose of exploring the tourist infrastructure and the management work with visitors was held in the National Park "Belovezhskaya Pushcha" and the Bialowieza National Park from the 21th November of 2012 to the 24th November, as the cooperation between these state environmental agencies in the field of tourism.

The event started in the Belarusian part of the Bialowieza Forest. The "round table", which discussed the development of tourism and ways to resolve disputes, was organized here. The workshop participants got acquainted with the infrastructure of the National Park, promising business projects and the priority areas of the tourism industry. During the tour across Belovezhskaya Pushcha, visitors have seen many of the attractions that this region is famous.

On November 22, the seminar continued in Poland. The participants were introduced to the structure of the Bialowieza National Park, its ecological paths, Nature Museum, excursion enclosures, hotel, restaurant, hunting and fishing, as well as with agro-tourism and roadside service on the Polish side of Bialowieza Forest. In addition, they visited the Regional Rourist Information Center in the town of Hajnowka.

The seminar had a warm and friendly atmosphere and will further contribute to the cooperation of the nature protection territories of Belarus and Poland.



November 30, 2012 Website "Naviny.by" Festival will meet Snow Maiden in Belovezhskaya Pushcha on December 1

Snow Maiden meeting festival will be held in the Estate of Father Frost in the National Park "Belovezhskaya Pushcha" on December 1, as BelTA learned from the National Park's management.

Traditionally, the first weekend in December is devoted to Maiden coming back with her entourage. According to legend, she goes to the North Pole after the first heat. But Santa Claus from Belovezhskaya Pushcha lives at his estate all year round. In spring, after the onset of heat, he takes off his winter coat and felt boots, and dresses light jacket, straw hat and elegant boots.

The Maiden meeting in Belovezhskaya Pushcha is always a holiday, followed by festivities. This time the visitors are offered a rich program - performances of creative groups, dances, as well as mandatory pancakes with fragrant tea from Pushcha's grasses.

The estate of Belarusian Father Frost in Belovezhskaya Pushcha met first visitors in December of 2003. Visitors - adults and children, Belarusians and foreigners - come to Santa Claus every day in the winter and summer, all year round. He gladly welcomes and serves all of them in his estate, which is located deep in the forest and covers almost 15 hectares. With the onset of dusk, many garlands of colored lights are illuminated in the estate. They sparkle and shimmer like priceless treasures. Only the Santa's house has about 40 thousand light bulbs. A 40-meter live spruce tree, which was decorated with 5,000 light bulbs, makes the main attraction of the estate of Father Frost in Belovezhskaya Pushcha.
Novembeer 28, 2012 Website "The State Nature Protection Establishment "The National Park "Belovezhskaya Pushcha"" Squirrels visiting Father frost

Squirrel is one of the most endearing inhabitants of Belovezhskaya Pushcha. One does not have to go far into the dense forest to meet the bright-red animal. The squirrel can suddenly jump to the path, cross the road and again suddenly shoot on the trunk or branches of a tree.

Now is much easier to see it - you should visit the Manor of Belarusian Father Frost. There, in a Snow Maiden small house, you can see over 100 displays dedicated to squirrel. These are toys, figurines, pillows, Christmas decorations and much more, with a squirrel image.

This amazing collection has been provided and organized by Natalia Koritich from Brest. She graduated from Belarusian State University with a degree geographer and environmentalist and plans to devote her life to ecotourism. The collecting images of squirrels are her hobby. The collection of squirrels will be exhibited in the Manor until Carnival.


November 28, 2012 Website "Real Brest" Belarusian bison are already different from the Polish ones

This is the conclusion reached by scientists who study the gene pool of the Pushcha's animals on both sides of the state border.

Belarusian and Polish specialists are involved in the joint research for many years. They study thoroughly the flora and fauna of one of Europe's most famous forests. Recently the employees of the National Park "Belovezhskaya Pushcha" visited the Polish Bialowieza National Park and once again exchanged experiences.

During the meeting the results of genetic studies of bison populations in Polish and Belarusian parts of Belovezhskaya Pushcha have been discussed. These animals living now on Polish and Belarusian sides of the forest have originated from a common ancestor in the last century. But, that's interesting, some differences in their gene pool are observed. The scientists soon will soon present the results of researches in a joint publication.

By Sergey Volkov, "Zarya" (The Dawn) newspaper
November 27, 2012 Website "The State Nature Protection Establishment "The National Park "Belovezhskaya Pushcha"" Crossings for bison

3 special crossings of drainage channels for these rare animals have newly been equipped in the central part of Belovezhskaya Pushcha, where is the year-round home to the big number of bison (about 100 animals). This will prevent the loss of bison, especially the youngest, because it is sometimes observed in the spring, when the channels are filled with water. Animals are already embracing new crossings.

November 26, 2012 Website "The State Nature Protection Establishment "The National Park "Belovezhskaya Pushcha"" Cooperation continues

The National Park "Belovezhskaya Pushcha" has a long-standing cooperation with the Bialowieza National Park (Poland). Especially close contacts have been established in the area of the research on the populations of mammals. On November 20, 2012, the employees of the National Park "Belovezhskaya Pushcha" visited the Bialowieza National Park, where they had a regular meeting with the staff of the Mammal Research Institute of the Polish Academy of Sciences. During the meeting the results of genetic studies of bison populations in Polish and Belarusian parts of Belovezhskaya Pushcha have been discussed. The fact is, although all bison on the Polish and Belarusian sides of the forest are of the same origin, but some differences in their gene pool are already visible. The research results will soon be presented in a joint publication.

A promising joint project to study the gene pool of foxes living in Poland and Belarus has also been discussed.
November 23, 2012 Website "Virtual Brest" What did Russian GasProm Company's leader Miller say about the Brest Fortress and Belovezhskaya Pushcha?

BelTA reported that during the visit in Belarus Mr. Miller thanked the President of Belarus, Alexander Lukashenko, for the opportunity to visit Belovezhskaya Pushcha and the Brest Fortress in August this year. "I was very impressed by the Brest Fortress. We made the decision to restore the Southeast barracks, to overhaul and place the exposition there. We will help the Brest Fortress through finances and render all assistance," said Alexei Miller.

He also shared his impressions of visiting Belovezhskaya Pushcha. "I have no words Ц it's just brilliant. I love mushroom-picking. I got great pleasure because I filled a basket with cep (porcino, Boletus edulis) during half an hour." "This nature is fantastic, amazing. Some special energy and a heady, fragrant air are there. Inhale and get great pleasure," said Alexei Miller.
November 23, 2012 Website "TOMIN.BY" The National Park "Belovezhskaya Pushcha" spent 2 billion Rubles ($ 241,000) for bison this year

Today 428 bison live in the relict forest. They live in the five groups in different parts of the forest. However, according to scientists, the optimum number makes 300 to 350 animals. National Park meets difficulties to feed the population of these animals.

This year 2 billion Rubles ($ 241,000) were spent for the bison feeding. Money was used to create technical fields with the growing summer crops and root. It allows preventing bison from leaving the Pushcha's forest Ц from going in search of food in the strictly protected area (the core of the forest) or in the farm fields of Pruzhany and Kamenets districts. Money was also used to make new hay feeders.

By winter, the National Park staff have prepared 950 tons of hay, over 1,000 tons of silage and 500 tons of beets for animals. By the way, one bison consumes 10 kilograms of hay and 8 kg of beets per day, as well as salt and mineral supplements.

Not only bison Comin "devour Belovezhskaya Pushcha. According to the spring account of the animals, 160 elks, 650 roe deer, 1,340 wild boars, 1,800 red deer, 65 badgers, 17 lynxes and 290 foxes live there.

By Tamara TIBOROVSKAYA,
Photo by Valentin Ezhelov
November 20, 2012 BP-21 Website News Service Millionth visitor of the website "Belovezhskaya Pushcha Ц 21st Century"

On November 20, 2012 (11/20/12), the one millionth (1,000,000) visitor of the website "Belovezhskaya Pushcha Ц 21st Century" was registered. The indicator to show the index of visiting of the website is located at the bottom of the main page.

Recall that the website was launched online in June of 2003. The half a million visitor was recorded at the beginning of September of 2009.

To date the BP-21 Century website contains almost two 2,000 pages of text only in Russian and Belarusian languages and is actually an encyclopedia of information on Belovezhskaya Pushcha in the past 15 years.

It is encouraging to note that at the moment the BP-21 website has fulfilled its initial main task - to raise public initiative, to collect and organize people around Belovezhskaya Pushcha who are willing and able to help solve its environmental, economic and social problems, to save the primeval relic forest, to promote the development of science, tourism and ecological education. Moreover, the Public Project "BP-21" was at the center of the force, which, being in unity, cooperation, and one way to other initiatives and environmentalists, could change the course of historical events from the destruction of the unique Bialowieza relic forest to its preservation. Thanks to the large-scale long-term (since 2001) public campaign in support of Belovezhskaya Pushcha, with the support of the international community and under the pressure from UNESCO and the Council of Europe, the Belarusian authorities eventually had to admit deadlock of the their initially chosen model of management of the Belovezhskaya Pushcha forest and change it.

As a result, the Presidential Decree No.59 of 02.09.2012 "On Some Issues of Especially Protected Natural Areas" entered into force on May 28, 2012. According to it, the boundaries of the functional zones of the National Park have been changed and the strictly protected conservation zone has been doubled - more than 50,000 hectares, instead of about 30,000 ha earlier. Thus, almost 3\4 of the territory of the Bialowieza primeval forest is strictly protected now. This is so for three generations of ecologists and environmentalists what they strived for, what they fought for and what they suffered from.

But evolution does not stand still. The development of human civilization continues. Time makes the new challenges that are particularly relevant in the period of the deepening ecological and social crisis and of changing the basic paradigm of life. Therefore a new grandiose task is now put - strictly protected and sacral Belovezhskaya Pushcha as a Centre of spiritual revival for people! This is a completely new idea unknown and incomprehensible to many. And like all things new, it requires a considerable time and effort for implementation. For its development, a modern concept of spiritual knowledge is described on the pages of Live Journal "How to Save the Planet Earth, Civilization, Himself". It should become in the future the basis of the currently emerging spiritual ecology, which will be a kind of top above the scientific-practical and humanitarian ecology.

The BP-21 Project Group is grateful to all those who support and selflessly help us in these difficult times, not only in informing and managing the website "BP-21" but also in the protection of Belovezhskaya Pushcha and its wildlife in general.

Prepared by Heorhi Kazulka
November 19, 2012 Website "The State Nature Protection Establishment "The National Park "Belovezhskaya Pushcha"" Scientists are studying the history of fires

From 7 to 15 November, Polish scientists from the Forest Institute at the European Center of Natural Forests in the village of Bialowieza worked in the National Park "Belovezhskaya Pushcha".

Researches for the Project "Fire History and Dynamics of Forest Stands in the Belarusian Part of the Bialowieza Forest" were the visit's aim. Scientists collected samples of wood of Scots pine and Norway spruce. The dendro-chronological analysis will set time of fires and the duration of the recovery processes in the stands of Belovezhskaya Pushcha.
November 16, 2012 Website "TOMIN.BY" Bialowieza bison do not use yet underground passages

A year ago - in November of 2011, a bypass road around the National Park "Belovezhskaya Pushcha" was put into service. The bypass was built in record time - one and a half years. Nine bridges over the rivers and wetlands were built on the road, as well as 32 "tunnels" for amphibians with guiding structures and 3 underground transitions for ungulates in places of their permanent migration. The total cost of the project amounted to about 490 billion rubles (about $ 100 millions).

The track is not very busy, although buses on the route Brest - Grodno through Kamenets, Svisloch and Big Berestovica towns are scheduled since this summer. The passengers have the chance to see a herd of bison. They quietly go to the roadway. This is because they have not learned until to use the underground passages built for them, and for other ungulates.

The problem is that the animals must be taught to walk under the road. How? It is necessary to arrange special fences - hedges, which will guide the animals in transition. Fertilizing plots are also necessary. But nobody is doing this.

It remains to add that 428 bison, 160 elk, 650 roa deer, 1,800 red deer and 1,340 wild boars live today in the National Park "Belovezhskaya Pushcha". Three tunnels under the road were built specially for them. »менно дл€ них строились три туннел€ под дорогой.

By Tamara TIBOROVSKAYA
November 16, 2012 Website "Euro-regions of Belarus" An office of the Belarusian Secretariat of Euroregion "Belovezhskaya Pushcha" to open

On November 9, 2012, a working meeting with representatives of local authorities, businesses, the public, invited experts and foreign partners was held in the National Park "Belovezhskaya Pushcha" in the frame of the International Technical Assistance Project "Promotion of Regional Development in the European Regions". Outcomes of the Project in the Euroregion "Belovezhskaya Pushcha" were summed up at the meeting and the official opening of the office of the Secretariat of the Belarusian European Region in the National Park "Belovezhskaya Pushcha" was done.

According to deputy chairman of the Council of the Euroregion "Belovezhskaya Pushcha" Zoya Mechkovskaya, the needs in the field of tourism, environmental protection and the promotion of historical and cultural heritage of the Euroregion "Belovezhskaya Pushcha" have been identified through the activities in the Project. Belarusian and Polish experts conducted the specialized training for experts from the staff of the National Park "Belovezhskaya Pushcha", local authorities and the owners of agrofarms, and prepared the informational and educational materials on tourism and environmental, historical and cultural features of the Euroregion "Belovezhskaya Pushcha" to publish them.

The local Environmental Fund "Euroregion "Belovezhskaya Pushcha"" is a the organization responsible for the implementation of activities of the International Technical Assistance Project "Promoting Regional Development in the Euro-Regions" on the territory of this European region.
November 15, 2012 Website "The State Nature Protection Establishment "The National Park "Belovezhskaya Pushcha"" Working meeting

The National Park "Belovezhskaya Pushcha" served a regular working meeting of the NGO "Euroregion "Belovezhskaya Pushcha"" on November 9, 2012. The main task of the meeting was the opening of the Secretariat of the Euroregion, the election of the secretary and the definition of priorities of the Belarusian office of the Secretariat. Welcoming remarks were made by the administration of the National Park "Belovezhskaya Pushcha", Mayor of the Hajnowka district (Poland) and representatives of district executive committees of Svisloch, Pruzhany and Kamenetz. In addition, reports on the experience of projects of the Polish side of the Euroregion (CBC Program "Poland-Belarus-Ukraine") and a presentation about the tourist potential in the Pruzhany district were made. A guest of the event - Ambassador of Cuba to Belarus Alfredo Nieves Portuondo - fascinatingly told the participants of the meeting about the development of tourism in Cuba. A film about the nature of this island state was shown.
November 14, 2012 Website "The Capital TV (CTV)" Where and how to spend the New Year? There are free places in the National Park "Belovezhskaya Pushcha" and 70% of the cafes and restaurants of Minsk are booked.

The capital of Minsk has already begun preparations for the New Year. Many shops sell holiday gifts, decorations and Christmas trees. Since November 15, the New Year actions are scheduled. There will be about 3 thousand of them in the capital, as told in the "Morning - Good Mood Studio" of CTV.

To celebrate the New Year outside the home, you need to hurry up! 70% of cafes and restaurants are already booked for the Christmas week, while recreation centers outside the cities have no possibility to serve visitors at that time.

To book a house in the village, one had to make a call in July. Typically, 90% of orders are made by Russians who come for 5-7 days during their Christmas vacation.

Belarusians prefer to go in Belovezhskaya Pushcha for the New Year's weekend.

Oksana Bogoleisha, head of the Tourism Department of the National Park "Belovezhskaya Pushcha":
As of November 13, all the places for the New Year's holidays are already booked in our National Park. Both Belarusians and foreigners as a percentage of about 50/50 will have rest here. To spend the 2012-New Year in the National Park, they placed an order as early as after the last New Year, and in the spring and summer. Belovezhskaya Pushcha is visited first of all to see Father Frost, who, by the way, meets guests not only in winter but also in other seasons.
November 13, 2012 Website "The State Nature Protection Establishment "The National Park "Belovezhskaya Pushcha"" Seeds of trees to collect

A good fruiting of various tree species is observed this year. Therefore, the National Park collected seeds of linden, maple, ash, rowan, hawthorn and other trees, which are necessary for the cultivation of seedlings and making forest plantations. Oak acorns from old and very valuable trees were under a particular attention. Except for English oak (Quercus robur), there are sessile oak stands in Belovezhskaya Pushcha listed in a National Red Data Book. Nearly 1.5 tons of the acorns of this relict species and about 6.5 tons of English oak's acorns have been collected this year. Seeds have been laid for storage and stratification. They will be sown in the nursery next spring.
November 12, 2012 Website "The State Nature Protection Establishment "The National Park "Belovezhskaya Pushcha"" Field seminar on the bog "Wild"

Between November 09 and 11, 2012, the Brest regional branch of the Public Organization "Belarus Birds' Life" and the scientific department of the National Park "Belovezhskaya Pushcha" plan the annual field seminar "Night forest dwellers", in the framework of cooperation in the field of environmental education, ecotourism and researches. The event will be held in the village of Zalesie, Pruzhany district, near the bog "Wild".

The workshop program consists of three parts - theoretical, practical and research. The theoretical part will be dedicated to the theory and practice of the use of cartographic materials and data bases in the study of flora and fauna. As part of the practical part, artificial nests for owls (Great Grey Owl, Boreal Owl and Sparrow) and dormice will be constructed. The third part will cover the inventory of owls and the disposal of artificial nests in the bog "Wild" and in its vicinity. The seminar is particularly relevant for research and ecotourism.
November 07, 2012 "Grodnenskaya Pravda" (The Grodno Truth) newspaper School students learn the nature on an ecological path in Belovezhskaya Pushcha

Students of the Novodvorskaya school of the Svisloch district discover natural exclusives on an ecological path in Belovezhskaya Pushcha.

"You see young oaks. They previously were not here," the biology teacher of the highest category and deputy director on educational work Maria Panotchyk says. She is asking me like I'm the student, "How do you think, where did they come from?"

No waiting for my answer, she gives her one "Jay spread acorns in the woods."

I together with Maria Panotchyk and the teacher of biology and chemistry Valentina Yakuta are walking on the ecological path, and I discover once again Belovezhskaya Pushcha.

I see an unusual-looking fern for the first time. It is growing from the same root, though called common many-legs. "I never saw it anywhere in our forests," the companions admit. They clarify that this is one of 11 species of ferns growing in the area. Students also found fern Galakuchnik Robert, which is growing in Germany. There are also two species of shchytovnik fern. They usually prefer damp places. Generally, there are 25 species of ferns in Belarus.

Then we see how shapes of the forest are changing Ц moss pine type, blueberry pine, etc. Biologists show how one can identify the age of trees and notice the unnoticed at first glance. Here, in junipers, there was a nest of the chaffinch (the bird takes the new location every year). A squirrel chose a thick spruce tree for its housing. A fox hole has several exits.

The ecological path, as a laboratory for students who learn nature being led by their teachers and scientists, is used to confirm their knowledge. Now the Project "Red Book's Pages of the Grodno Region" is implemented here. They explore many things and consult with foresters to create maps.

By Galina Romanchuk