Chornomorskyi Biosphere Reserve – Refuge for Rare Bird Species
The diversity of Ukraine’s landscapes as well as its immense biodiversity has led to the conservation and protection of 3.9% of Ukraine’s land. There are many different types of territories put aside for conservation, which is under the Law on Nature Conservation Fund of Ukraine.
This includes areas like Regional Landscape Parks, Nature Reserves, Nature Monuments, National Parks and Biosphere Reserves. Another group classified under artificially created complexes and objects includes Botanical Gardens, Zoological Parks, Horticultural Art, Park Monuments of Architecture and Landscape and Dendrological Parks.
The Chornomorskyi is a reserve that was formed in 1983. The Choronomorskyi Biosphere Reserve, or Black Sea Biosphere Reserve is the largest reserve in Ukraine and is situated in the region of Mykolaiv and Kherson and is run by the National Academy of Sciences. The 14,148 hectares of land that makes up the Biosphere reserve in Ukraine are made up of areas of forests, which include the warty birch, alder, common oak and the violet willow. The rest of the 100,000 hectare reserve is made up of the Tendrivska and Yagorlytska Bays that make up the open sea zone.
The Chornomorskyi Biosphere Reserve concentrates specifically on protecting as many as three hundred birds, which are either nesting or are migratory. The reserve plays an important role in conserving bird species that are under threat and bird species that are considered rare. Take for instance the black-headed gull: over ninety percent of these gulls live in the vicinity of the Chornomorskyi reserve, very few can be found elsewhere. There are over 305 species of birds that can be found here.
The Biosphere is quite different to the many other reserves in the country, containing both flora and fauna found in ecosystems like marine, land, marsh, river, forest and wetlands. The reserve has a temperate climate with an average temperature of about –2°C in the first few months of the year, going up to +24°C from July onwards. The reserve also plays an important role in looking after the unique desert steppes of Nyzhniodniprovya and the complex sand structures found there.