State Kandalaksha Nature Reserve

State Kandalaksha Nature Reserve
State Kandalaksha Nature Reserve

Protected natural areas are studied at school as part of the discipline "Natural Science". The Kandalaksha Nature Reserve is no exception. It is spread over an area of ​​more than fifty-eight thousand hectares in the Murmansk region and is considered a reserve for the protection of many waterfowl. Most of it is the water area of ​​the Barents Sea. About the birds that live in this state-protected area, they write not only in school textbooks. The famous writer V. Bianchi examined the local flora and fauna in detail.

History of Appearance

Kandalaksha Reserve

Like many other reserves and national parks in Russia, Kandalaksha was created to preserve a certain species of animals and birds. In this case, it is the common eider, which is famous for its down and is of great value abroad. In 1932, when the illegal killing of this bird, the destruction of its nests and the collection of eggs for sale reached a devastating scale, this reserve was created. Initially, it was considered a scientific base on which ornithologists studied the birds living in this region. Gradually, the number of waterfowl began to increase.


Some time later, Kandalaksha Statethe natural reserve was transferred to the department of the relevant committee. This led to increased control of the protected area and expansion of its borders to today's.

Kandalaksha Nature Reserve

At the moment, it is difficult to overestimate the international importance that the Kandalaksha Reserve, located in the waters of the bay of the same name, has for the preservation of habitats for waterfowl.

Geographic conditions

This natural protected area is located on the coast of the Barents Sea and in the small bay of Bely. There is no sun in Kandalaksha for up to eight days in a row, on the adjacent Seven Islands - about forty. Nevertheless, even during the polar night, wintering diurnal animals are provided with a normal existence.

Kandalaksha Nature Reserve is located in the climatic zone formed under the influence of the Murmansk current. The peculiarity of the natural conditions of this water area is strong temperature fluctuations, so sharp cooling and warming are observed in all seasons.


State Kandalaksha Nature Reserve

The geological structure of the area, which covered the State Kandalaksha Reserve, is interesting with well-preserved rocks that are more than three billion years old. The terrain was formed under the influence of repeated glaciations. Incredibly beautiful are the shores destroyed by the waves, as well as the ramparts formed from pebbles and boulders rolled by the sea. In total, the Kandalaksha Nature Reserve owns thirty-five geologicalobjects with the status of natural monuments.

It includes almost four and a half hundred islands of different shapes and structures, many types of vegetation - from exposed rocks to densely forested areas. There are few streams and lakes in the reserve. All of them are quite small. The largest - Bolshoe Kumyazhye and Serkinskoye - reach a depth of ten meters.


Kandalaksha Reserve in its vegetation cover has more than six hundred and thirty species. On the coast of the White Sea and the islands, pine and spruce forests predominate. There are many plants typical of the sea coast - sedge, cereals and Asteraceae.

Natural History Kandalaksha Nature Reserve

The bogs of the reserve are subdivided into sedge, shrub or cottongrass - depending on the vegetation prevailing on them. However, water bodies are not at all rich in large species of grasses. Even the reeds growing along the banks never form dense thickets.

In areas where sea gulls and herring gulls accumulate, the vegetation is very diverse, since the soil in these places is well fertilized. Here you can see large-flowered chamomile, saplings, eyebright and sorrel, buttercup, etc.


Kandalaksha Reserve has about one hundred and sixty species of representatives of the local fauna. Of these, twenty-one are mammals, one hundred and thirty-four are birds, two are reptiles, and three are amphibians.

Predatory animals such as lynx, wolverine and wolf are more common on Veliky Island. However, therethey do not live permanently because the area is too small for them.

There are two or three bears in the area adjacent to the Great. The reserve is constantly inhabited by fox and pine marten, weasel and ermine, as well as American mink. Their livestock cannot be called numerous: it depends on the presence of small rodents.

Reserves and national parks of Russia Kandalaksha

The white hare is the most widespread fur-bearing animal, it lives on all the islands of the reserve. In the coldest winters, polar bears sometimes appear here. On lakes where vegetation is rich, muskrat is found, swimming from one island to another and choosing the most favorable habitat.

Of small mammals, the bank vole is found here, as well as lemmings, which appear on the territory of the protected area only during their mass migrations.


Caercaillie, black grouse, hazel grouse and partridge live here all year round, as well as some varieties of tits, woodpeckers and cuckoos. In the spring, when migratory birds appear, the forests in the reserve come to life. Flocks of birds are especially numerous along the sea coasts, in sparse pine and spruce forests. Here you can meet white-browed thrush, black grouse, partridges, predators such as kestrel, merlin and hawk owl. Sandpipers and fifi, snipe and large snails settle in the swamps.

Specially Protected Plants

And although all the biological varieties inhabiting the Kandalaksha Reserve are subject to conservation, nevertheless, many rare species are noted here,included in the Red Book of both Russia and the Murmansk region. They have a specially protected official status.

From the Red Book of the Murmansk region, about forty-two percent of the total number of endangered species are noted here, of which five are fungi, thirty-four are lichens, twenty liverworts, and the same number of leafy moss. Among vertebrate animals, six species of fish, two representatives of reptiles and amphibians, forty-two birds and some mammals are specially protected.

Kandalaksha Nature Reserve Researchers

Plants found on the territory of the Kandalaksha Bay and nowhere else in the world grow mainly in protected areas. Among them are island grit, arctic sunflower and white-tongued dandelion.

Specially Protected Animals

There are twenty-seven species of them in the reserve. For the Atlantic gray seal, as well as for the crested and great Atlantic cormorants, the Kandalaksha Reserve is the main habitat and breeding place in all of Russia. In addition, common eider (for which, in fact, this protected area was originally created), golden eagle, osprey, peregrine falcon, white-tailed eagle, gyrfalcon and Scandinavian white-throated thrush nest here. Several species of whales and dolphins, as well as the common seal, polar bear and walrus are considered specially protected marine mammals.

kandalaksha state nature reserve


Kandalaksha Nature Reserve, whose scientists have been carrying out their work since itscreation, was originally positioned as a place where, by all means, it was necessary to preserve the population of the common eider. In the short pre-war period, the very first extensive study of seabirds was carried out here, which later became a classic.

After the war, the range of work began to gradually expand. In addition to continuing the study of the ecology of some seabirds, a systematic process has begun to describe the territory of the reserve, vegetation and its littoral marine communities.

Kandalaksha Nature Reserve Researchers

Since then, the results of all standard observations have been combined into an annual reporting document, called as follows: "The chronicle of nature in the Kandalaksha Reserve." It is a current summary of biological monitoring and includes data on the development of all seasonal biological processes. The document describes the timing of vegetation and flowering, as well as fruiting in various plants, the beginning and end of spring or autumn migration, the process of reproduction of animals and information about their numbers.

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