Rus Articles Journal

The earth of a crane

the Name “Crane Homeland“ arose for kind half a century before emergence of this wildlife reserve. In the middle of 1920 - x years the famous writer - the naturalist Mikhail Prishvin lodged in this country. It arrived near Tald to write the novel about heroes - the reclamation experts turning gloomy peat bogs into “A gold lugovina“. But the longer the writer “entered a subject“, the his heart protested against the idea of destruction of bogs more furiously. The novel about reclamation experts and remained unwritten. And instead of it from - under Prishvin`s feather there was a story about beauty of northern Moscow area “The crane homeland“. Today this place is not less known, but already as the key ornithological territory of world value.

of the Vicinity of Taldom you will not call untouched, on the contrary, they partly are obliged by the uniqueness to activity of the person. The leaving glacier left behind the shallow lakes which quickly turned into peat bogs in all lowlands. On more sublime and dry sites the woods rose: where is lower - Beryozovo - an alder melkolesye where is higher - pine, oak and vyazovy manes. Later people cleared away part of not boggy lands for the needs, having turned them into fields and pastures.

This rare combination of the natural and cultivated landscapes, deserted bogs with the cultivated fields also was extremely attractive to a set of bird species. During seasonal flights of the field provided to feathery travelers the guaranteed entertainment (in the spring - shoots winter, in the fall - the harvest remains), and bogs and lakes - places for safe spending the night. In the spring these edges are literally crowded with birds: cranes, wild geese, ducks, numerous sandpipers land here to be fed and have a rest. Some remain here on a constant residence, the majority flies further that in the fall to arrange a halt in the basin of Dubna again. This territory is especially important for cranes to whom taldomsky grounds are led up not so much the homeland, how many the place of the general collecting. In the summer in local bogs there live about 20 couples of cranes, in their fall here gathers till 1500 (and in 1987 counted 3500). Exactly here the grown-up baby birds for the first time learn that except their parents and brothers - sisters on light there live the great and mighty crane people which members they from now on should become.

Value of the Taldomsky region for birds increased even more in the XX century when the person began active approach to bogs. First of all the peat bogs bordering on the developed lands, that is the most valuable and convenient for birds underwent drainage and developments. In Taldomskom and Sergiyevo - Posadsky areas melioration and torfozagotovka were conducted too, but is moderate - the most part of marsh grounds at people was just not reached by hands. In 1950 - 1960 - e years the majority of peatery was thrown and, having filled with water, turned into the picturesque lakes which are quickly developed by birds. But in 1970 - e years over “The crane homeland“ hung two threats at once: on the one hand, the large-scale program of melioration of the Russian Non-Black Earth Region, and with another - mass distribution of “neudobiya“ (as which all boggy lands were ranked) under seasonal dachas. Not indifferent public, and first of all a team of conservation of biology faculty of MSU, tried to protect unique edge. Their efforts in 1979 created the first wildlife area which received the name “Crane Homeland“. Today so call also all network of the protected natural territories in Taldomskom and Sergiyevo - Posadsky areas. Nowadays them already 15 it is also some more projected. Here is what to protect: differently figurative landscapes serve as a shelter to a set of rare species for Moscow area of plants and animals. Here the dwarfish birch, cloudberries, unique marsh orchids grow, the bear, a lynx, an otter, a badger are found, wolves come. But the main property of “The crane homeland“ are birds: large predatory (podorlik, a falcon - a derbnik, a skopa, a golden eagle), owls, sandpipers, herons, wild geese. And, of course, cranes.“ The crane homeland“ is known in the world as the key ornithological territory which existence is important for wellbeing of all world population of some species of birds.

to Keep such wealth in the middle of the populous, economically developed region it is difficult. The earth of “The crane homeland“ are bound not only with agricultural grounds, but also with housing estates and hunting grounds. During spring and autumn hunting neighboring fields flood the whole crowds of shooters, the cannonade begins almost after dark as soon as the flying birds become visible against the dawn sky. For the director of “The crane homeland“ Olga Grinchenko, employees of the wildlife reserve and their volunteer assistants (generally students - combatants) it is the most real harvest season: day and night they patrol wildlife area borders, watching that some hazardous company did not cross forbidden line. Some formally break nothing, but are let on cunning, for example, send to the wildlife area of the unarmed messenger to alarm the birds who took cover there. The matter is that bright geese already learned - on these lands to the person with the gun the course is closed, and sit down on rest exactly there. Indirectly it confirms high efficiency of protection of “The crane homeland“, in order that birds noticed safety of certain sites, it has to be close to absolute.

But there where did not let hunters in the spring, there are in the summer mushroom pickers and berry-pickers who out of ignorance disturb birds, and those can throw a nest. However, on bogs where cranes and some other valuable birds nest, mushrooms do not grow, and from berries only the cranberry ripening in the fall is of interest. At this time birds are not attached to a nest any more, but cranes just have a big autumn collecting, and emergence on a bog of collectors of berries can lead to the fact that birds will refuse spending the night on it. Therefore in Taldomsky district collecting a cranberry officially opens only after flying away of cranes - in the middle of October. However, the main trouble of “The crane homeland“ - not hunters and mushroom pickers, and the grass fires. In the spring over meadows situated near Moscow and bogs, as well as it is necessary all Russia, thousands of smokes rise. All of them - work of the person. Fire ruins bird`s nests, destroys useful insects, changes players of vegetation - the burned-out places grow not with meadow herbs, but a tall weeds. Worst of all, when fire reaches the drained sites of peat bogs - it can live in peat layer months and years, breaking on a surface then, there.

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With people it is difficult, but without them as it became clear, it is bad too. In 1990 - e years when the Soviet forms of managing on the earth failed, and the country people were quickly reduced, meadows and fields began to grow with a tall weeds, and then and a melkolesye - a birch, an alder, an aspen. It would seem, here it, dream of all defenders of environment: the nature provided to itself tightens the wounds put with the person! But overgrowing of fields and pastures led not to increase, and to reduction of number of many bird species. It turned out that centuries of the neighbourhood with the person changed biology of these types: many sandpipers once nesting only on bogs occupied haying meadows, and some birds (for example, curlews) resolutely moved in new grounds, having almost left bogs. And now to them it is vital that the person continued to plow, mow, sow, graze cattle.“ To return big veretennik, it was necessary to return on pastures of cows, and cranes and geese need grain fields“, - one of creators of the wildlife area Elena Krasnova says.

But there`s no evil without good, as a result “The crane homeland“ turned into the unique ground on which there is developed and passes a running in the system of rational environmental management. Its experience shows: interests of people - not only peasants and farmers, but also summer residents, hunters, fishers - at all not necessarily contradict requirements of conservation. Long-term educational activity bears fruit: today many neighboring farms sow “a crane strip“ (a wedge of rye or other cereal which leave untidy especially for a subforage of birds). This business is frequent school students from neighboring villages undertake. The most active and interested get an award - an opportunity to participate in scientific work of the wildlife area: accounting of birds, search of places of nesting of rare species and other planned actions. Without understanding from locals activity of “The crane homeland“ would be impossible.

The matter is that along with study of opportunities of the peace neighbourhood of the person and the nature the wildlife reserve - without volition - became object of one more experiment: how long public institution which is carrying out national objectives can do without the help of the state? After liquidation in 2000 of federal environmental agency - Gosk ecology and a number of reorganization of regional structures “Crane homeland“ was neutral, not subordinated to any governing body (though nobody removed the security status and tasks connected with it from it). To live the own way, without having over itself any administration, maybe, it would even be pleasant if at the same time the wildlife reserve did not lose public financing. Meanwhile any activity, as that: protection of the territory, maintenance of roads and structures, scientific and uchebno - educational work, - costs money. Which - that, however, it is possible to make a labor of love of employees. Tadomsky district where are proud of “The crane homeland“ helps and treat its needs seriously. Researches manage to be financed by grants (generally European) and partially from the budget of the regional program “Ecology of Moscow Area“ including summer ecological camp for school students and other educational activity. But neither that, nor other source just have no right to give money for conducting economic activity - fuel, maintenance, payment of taxes and insurance...

Employees see an exit in transformation of “The crane homeland“ to national park. - the fact: by the size, richness of the nature, the carried-out tasks this territory already it is, but the federal status means the corresponding financing, staff and powers. The project of Crane Homeland park is ready long ago, its creation appears in long-term plans of the Ministry of natural resources, and so far nobody objected to this idea, but when it is carried out, it is known. For now the unique wildlife reserve tries to legalize the existence, the bogs forming it, the woods and fields lead own life. Every spring and fall over them the sonorous shouts announcing arrival or flying away of huge and beautiful birds rush.