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17:25 | Aug 15 | 2013

Journey to the Kolyma reserves. Verkhnekolymsky ulus

 The Kolyma is as mother for local residents, as it the source of fish, game, and water - all that helps to survive in the North.

Flowing out from Magadan, Kolyma continues to flow through the territory of Yakutia combining three northern uluses: Verkhnekolymsky, Srednekolymsky and Nizhnekolymsky.
On the one hand, territorial remoteness and inaccessibility of transport greatly complicate life in these northern regions; on the other hand, the Kolyma nature is still preserved in a state of nature thanks to this. These places have recently been visited by ecological troops of the Ministry of Natural Recourses of Yakutia.
There are three protected areas on the territory of Verkhnekolymsky ulus. These are resource reserves “Sylgy-Ytar”, “Ozhogino Basin” and “Yasachnaya Basin”. Their total area is about 2.5 million hectares which is about a third part of the region territory.
“Sylgy-Ytar” is the smallest of the three reserves but it is the oldest one: next year it will be thirty years. The former wildlife sanctuary received this name from Lake Sylgy-Ytar located in its very center. The main objects of protection are Kolyma elk and wetland birds listed in the Red Book of Russia and Yakutia such as white-winged loon, lesser white-fronted goose, Baikal teal, gerfalcon, peregrine falcon, white-tailed eagle, whooping swan, pink seagull; the water boundaries of protected reservations contain spawning grounds of sturgeon.
In spring and autumn this territory is a place for migration of 88 birds: loons, anseriformes, falconiformes, galliformes, and so on. Mammals are presented by bear, sable, wolverine, and lynx. All this economy is kept watch by inspectors of the Special Protected Natural Reservations.
“Many people think that our main work is to catch poachers, but this is not the case. Our work is constant monitoring of what is happening in the reserve: arrival and departure of birds, timings of fish spawning, meteorological observation, etc. We record when snow falls, freezings start, slush goes and ice forms; we also measure depth of snow cover and keep a winter route records”, - Mikhail Sivtsev says.
Each inspector has a register where he records his observations, which are introduced with other documents to the departments of Biological Resources and Hunt Management of Yakutia at the end of the year.
“We were sitting and drinking tea and saw an elk coming to us on a cordon; it stopped and was standing not paying attention to the stove. This suggests that our work with the population gives results: relation to nature becomes less consumer. I do not have a dog in principle and do not take weapons with me on principle, so animals come to us very often”, he - says.
Photo'ssource: http://ecodelo.org