Table of contents:
- Geographical position and relief
- Local features
- Flora and fauna
- Water resources
- Some of the history of the life of peasants in the Baraba steppe
This steppe region of Western Siberia is the most important for the development of agriculture, dairy farming and butter production in this region. In order to increase the efficiency of work in the presented areas, huge areas of land are plowed up and land reclamation is actively carried out to improve meadow lands and drain swamps.
The Baraba steppe is located on the territory of the Omsk and Novosibirsk regions. It covers an area of about 117 thousand square kilometers.
Geographical position and relief
Baraba lowland (Baraba) is a forest-steppe plain located in the southern part of Western Siberia. It extends from the interfluve of the Irtysh and Ob to the Kulunda Plain (in the south).
The terrain is slightly hilly, the height above sea level varies from 100 to 150 meters. The southern part of the lowland is characterized by distinctly expressed parallelelevations (the so-called "manes"), occupied by meadow steppes, mixed grass meadows and birch groves on solonetzes, chernozem and gray forest soils.
Between the hills in the depressions of the Baraba steppe there are s alt and fresh lakes (more than 2000), occupants, sphagnum swamps and solonchak meadows.
Baraba mostly extends to the expanses of the Novosibirsk region. The forest-steppe is the most typical lowland landscape. These are open meadow or steppe spaces, which alternate with small areas of birch-aspen forest - kolki (the name used by the local population). Quite often they form in relief depressions, where monotonous vegetation grows. Open spaces, meadows and steppes are more diverse and rich in vegetation.
The weather in the Baraba steppe changes quite often and unexpectedly. Either cumulus light clouds float across the sky, then clouds suddenly come in and it starts to rain, as if from a bucket, and after one or two days, heat and drought become relevant again.
Flora and fauna
Herbaceous vegetation in the steppe is sometimes sparse, sometimes dense, sometimes saturated with flower colors, sometimes monophonic. High in the air the larks sing, which build their nests on the ground. The steppe is also rich in various invertebrates.
The composition of the forest-steppe grasses of this lowland is very rich. In some areas not plowed by people, there is even feather grass. In the spring, evencloser to summer, bright yellow dandelions and adonis appear among the grasses. There are also bluebells in summer, blossoming flowers of strawberries, anemones and so on turn white.
Beetles and butterflies are not inferior to the flowers of the Baraba steppe in a variety of colors. In the grass you can find a common hedgehog, which was not here 20 years ago. Roe deer are found among the pegs, which are distributed throughout almost the entire territory of Baraba. Steppe foxes and ground squirrels live in these places.
Baraba lowland can be safely called a country of lakes and rivers. Rivers such as Karasuk, Bagan, etc. flow here. Basically, they are leisurely and shallow. The rivers Kargat and Chulym feed Chany with their waters - the largest brackish drainless lake in the Baraba steppe. Its western part, Yudinsky reach, is one of the problems of the Novosibirsk region. About 20 years ago, there was a vast space filled with water, in which many fish lived. Everything has changed today. These places have turned into a real sandy desert, in which even mirages are possible. There is almost no life in the s alt lake water, only sometimes such places are visited by seagulls.
There is another interesting lake called Karachi, which is developing in this area as an element of the resort area. On its banks there are deposits of therapeutic mud. The saline soils of these places are called solonchaks, which are a characteristic feature of the southwestern part of Baraba. These soils are unsuitable for agriculture.
Some of the history of the life of peasants in the Baraba steppe
Researchers and travelers of the 18th-19th centuries, who studied the life of the population of Siberia, in particular, the Baraba lowland, generally noted the great role of hunting and fishing in the economy of peasants (due to feeding on fish and game). They kept a small number of domestic livestock, and were also engaged in agriculture, but not everywhere.
For example, according to the fifth revision (census) of the population, carried out at the beginning of the 19th century, there were 190 farmers (almost 42% of the inhabitants), hunters and pastoralists - 125 (more than 27%) among the Turkic Melets (456 souls in total), and hunters-fishers - 141 (almost 31%).