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From the history of especially protected natural territories of East Prussia and the Kaliningrad region

UDC 947 (470.26)

E.E. Novova



The short review of five stages of development of especially protected natural territories of East Prussia is given (XVIII — HHvv.).

A short review of East Prussian natural reserves development (XVIII-XX centuries) is presented.

The first "reserved" territories in East Prussia appeared at the beginning of our era. Their creation is connected with pagan beliefs of ancient inhabitants of this earth — pruss which had sacred groves inhabited according to legends, gods and souls of the died people. The most known of them the sacred grove Romov is considered (near the present settlement of Lipovka of Bagrationovsky district of the Kaliningrad Region), in it the chief priest of pruss — Krive-Krivaytis made the ceremonies. In these groves any economic activity, in particular cutting of trees was strictly banned. At pruss (protected) not only trees, but also the rivers, stones, animal, etc. appeared sacred [1]. Such objects can be considered prototypes of the modern especially protected natural territories (EPNT).

The first stage of development of protected areas of East Prussia belongs to the beginning of the 18th century. By order of the German governors some areas rich with a game suitable for hunting, for protection against poaching were taken under special protection. Curonian Spit — the favourite venue of royal hunting throughout centuries since 16th century became one of them. Rich hunting resources attracted poachers already in those days. On their fault deer in virgin forests began to disappear that induced the king Friedrich Wilhelm I to sign the decree on the organization of the reserve "Royal Forest" in the southern part of Curonian Spit. The specific mode of its protection saved the wonderful site of the fir forest from cutting and extermination of the animals living in it [2].

The Romintensky dense forest became other protected area founded during this period. Earlier, during the medal period, "wild thickets" of Rominten were the place of production of a construction oak, a linden (for receiving charcoal) and also other deciduous trees on firewood, pitch and for production of beehives. Forest thickets were used also as hunting ugodyev. In the 18th century of the area of the wild woods strongly decreased therefore in 1890 the Kaiser Wilhelm II announced Rominten imperial court hunting grounds. At this time 25 thousand hectares of a thicket were cultivated. After 1918 the Rominten-sky state hunting grounds especially were famous for deer with branchy horns [3].

The second stage began in 1937 when the national nature reserve "German Moose Forest" was created. It included lands to the East and the southeast from the Curonian Bay with a total area of 46,550 hectares. In 1939 to "The moose wood" the districts of Curonian Spit Rosigten and Shvartsort united in 1940 in the forest County of Rosigten were attached. In 1941 all district "Moose wood" turned into direct submission to imperial service of forest and hunting economy. Merge of 11 provincial counties in the reserved and hunting economy centralized, managed by the state had no analogs in the history of East Prussia. Workers of this reserve managed to achieve considerable success in development of hunting economy and selection of an east Prussian elk [2]. For the purpose of preservation of a unique natural complex the reserve on the swamp Tselaubrukh (Pravdinsky district) was also created.

The third stage of formation of the OOPT system began in the 60th of the 20th century. For protection and enrichment of fauna in the Kaliningrad region the network of the state natural wildlife areas of regional value was created: "The Vistula braid" (1963, the area is 21, "Kamensk" (1963, 255, "May and Krasnaya Polyana" (1963, 298, Curonian Spit (1967, 66, Novoselovsky (1976, 198 A number of unique natural objects received the status of nature sanctuaries, including the lake Vishtynetskoye and River Krasnaya.

The fourth stage (1987 — 1991) was caused by awareness of need of increase in the status of the existing OOPT and formation of a natural framework of the Kaliningrad region. In 1987 the resolution of Council of ministers of RSFSR founded the state natural national park Curonian Spit — the first OOPT of federal importance in this region.

The fifth stage when the concept of creation of the Polish-Lithuanian-Russian Vishtynetsko-Suvalksky cross-border territory covering the following parts was developed began with realization of the idea of the organization of cross-border OOPT in 1992:

• the northern, most sublime and strongly cut up part sou-valksky Priozerya with the Suvalksky landscape (landscape) park (about 30 thousand hectares);

• the regional Vishtynetsky park in the territory of Lithuania (20 thousand hectares);

• the Russian part of the Romintensky dense forest — the Vishtynetsky wildlife area in the territory of the Kaliningrad region (about 32 thousand hectares);

• Polish part of the Romintensky dense forest (18 thousand hectares) [4].

For the purpose of preservation and restoration of especially valuable natural complexes and objects in the territory of the Kaliningrad region and formation of the OOPT system in 1997 — 1999 the Russian-Swedish project "Development of the Plan of Conservation for the Kaliningrad Region" was executed. The final document [5] contains the short description estimated for OOPT institution with a total area of 824 (5.4% of the territory of the area, 6.3% of the area of its sushi) and 10 protected river systems which area is not determined. All existing and estimated (planned) OOPT were ranged on significance value (I — all-Baltic, II — border, III — regional, IV — local) and on the degree of threat for preservation (And — there is a real threat for preservation,


The B — does not have direct threat for preservation or it is small). Development of this document was carried out under the direction of Committee of natural resources on the Kaliningrad region of the Ministry of natural resources of Russia. At the same time preparation for creation of national park Vishtynetsky which is urged to become a kernel of cross-border OOPT of the international level began.

Along with it in 1998 the order of the governor of the Kaliningrad region L.P. Gorbenko legal status of wildlife areas "Gromov-sky", "Dune" and Vishtynetsky was lowered from complex to zoological, and the wildlife area "Vistula braid" in general lost the status of OOPT. In 1999 especially protected water objects the head of regional administration announced wetlands (torfomestorozhde-niya) with a total area of 264.9 In the same time for the purpose of preservation of population of an elk the zoological wildlife area "Reserved" was formed.

Thus, the system of especially protected natural territories of East Prussia — the Kaliningrad region gained the greatest real development at the second stage (in the first half of the 20th century). During this period the reserves having the highest category of protection were the prevailing OOPT form.

List of sources and literature

1. East Prussia. Since the most ancient times until the end of World War II. Kaliningrad, 1996.
3. Tutttsayt E. East Prussia in 1440 illustrations. Ler, 1995.
4. V.V. eaglet, etc. Vishtynetsky lake: nature, history, ecology. Kaliningrad, 2001.
5. Scheme of conservation of the Kaliningrad region. Kaliningrad, 2005.

About the author E.E. Novov's

UDC 947 (470.26): 355.121

G.V. Kretinin


Activities of military commandant's offices for the organization of peaceful life in the territory of the Konigsberg (Kaliningrad) region are considered.

* Article is prepared with financial support of the Russian humanitarian scientific fund, project No. 07-01-44101a/3.

Frida Signe Maria
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