Koryaksky Zapovednik, Russia

Koryaksky Reserve is a state natural reserve located in the northern part of the Kamchatka Peninsula. The total area of ​​the reserve is over 327 hectares. The Koryak State Nature Reserve is a federal nature conservation, research, and environmental education institution.

The nature reserve was founded in December 1995. The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) took an active part in its establishment. The main purpose of its creation was the protection of the places of mass migration and nesting of various species of waterfowl, the protection of marine and coastal ecosystems in the south of the Bering Sea, as well as the entire complex of ecosystems in the northern part of the Kamchatka Peninsula.

The reserve consists of two sections - the Goven Peninsula and the Parapolsky Dol. The area of ​​the first site is about 151 thousand hectares, and the second - over 176 thousand hectares. The Govensky site is located within the Pylginsky ridge, characterized by steep slopes, rocky sheer walls, pointed ridges and peaks. The territory of this site is washed by the waters of the Olyutorsky Bay and the Korf Bay, which belong to the Bering Sea basin. As for the "Parapolsky" site, it stretches along a huge lowland, swampy and dissected by vast river valleys.


Geographical position

The Koryaksky Reserve is located in the Koryaksky District of the Kamchatka Territory. It consists of three cluster sections: Cape Govin, Lavrov Bay (Olyutorsky District) and Parapolsky Dol (Penzhinsky District). The latter is significantly removed from the rest and is located in the Parapolskaya lowland.

"Govena Cape" and "Lavrova Bay" are relatively close to each other, they are united by a common protected area and are located on the Govena Peninsula, which belongs to the mountain system of the Koryak Highlands.

The Govena peninsula is washed by the waters of the bays of the Bering Sea: Korf in the west and Olyutorsky in the east. The area of the reserve is 327,156 hectares, of which 83,000 hectares are the waters of the Bering Sea. The Cape Govena and Lavrov Bay sites are surrounded by a protected area with a total area of 588,954.751,799 ha.



The cluster site "Cape Govena" borders on the protected zone of the reserve. Its border runs from the mouth of the Galinvilanvayam River in the Gulf of Corfu upstream to the very source, then along the watershed north to the source of the Ivatysvayam River and downstream to the very mouth. Further along the coast, going around Cape Govena, to the mouth of the Galinvilanvayam River, including a 6-mile zone of the sea area (up to a depth of 60 m), starting from the traverse of the river. Ivatysvayam in the Olyutorsky Bay to the fishing area Ν 438 of the Koryaksky fish factory that does not exist now in the Korfa Bay.

The Lavrov Bay cluster site has a common border with the protected zone. It starts from the mouth of the stream that flows into the sea between Lavrov Bay and the Tinticun lagoon, goes upstream the stream to the watershed surrounding the bay. Further, the border runs along the watershed around the Lavrov Bay to the headwaters of another stream that flows into the sea between the Lavrov Bays and the nameless lagoon into which the Balina River flows. Then the border goes southwest along the coast, goes around Lavrov Bay along the contour of the coast and closes at the mouth of a stream that flows into the sea between Lavrov Bay and the Tinticun lagoon. The site does not have a protected marine area.

The extreme southern point of the "Parapolsky Dol" site is located below the headwaters of the Kuyul River (traverse to height 402). The border follows the course of the Kuyul River to the north along the fairway (in this part the boundary of the buffer zone completely coincides with the boundary of the protected area), then downstream of the Akalkinyavayam River (a tributary of the Kuyul River). Then traverse to height 89, crossing almost perpendicularly the rivers Maelgovayam, Yantapyntovayam, Tylakkylvayam. Further to the place where the Razvayam river flows into the Viairavayam river. Then traverse to height 78, crossing the Tundrovaya, Tyngynvayam, Veselaya, Tikhaya, Amocha rivers (left tributaries of the Kuyul River), then to the confluence of the Tynynkvayam River into the Yygtylavayam River. Further downstream Yygtylavayam to its confluence with the Kuyul River, then downstream the Kuyul River to the confluence of the Unneivayam River. Then upstream the Unneivayam River to the confluence of the left tributary Yvtylutvayam. The southern boundary of the site runs parallel to the boundary of the buffer zone, is traced along heights 437, 386, 390, 265, 88, 126, 402 (the boundary of the site crosses the upper reaches of the Yyngavayam, Kaitsyngayam, Yetylkuyul rivers, the channels in the middle reaches of the Katalyanayvayam, Ichiginnyvayam rivers, the sources of Gillanvayam, Kuchavayam , Kuntyklyavayam).


Natural areas and climate

The characteristic common features of the climate of Koryakia are:
• Long cold winters, short and cool summers, even shorter springs and autumns;
• Widespread negative mean annual air temperature;
• Thin, uneven snow cover in open areas of plain and mountain tundra;
• Strong year-round winds;
• The ubiquitous distribution of permafrost (continuous or insular).

No studies of the temperature regime in the Koryaksky Reserve were carried out, but the data obtained at the weather station in the village of Tilichiki in 2015 are known. The temperature distribution in the area of the meteorological station is of a continental nature, which is confirmed by low temperatures in winter and relatively high temperatures in summer (abs. max. 22.3 ℃, 30.07.2015; absolute min. -28.1 ℃, 12.12.2015). However, the proximity of the Bering Sea has a significant impact on the climate of the region. The average duration of the frost-free period in the continental part is 90-95 days, on the coast - 130-145 days. The area is characterized by intense wind conditions. In winter, the prevailing winds are northern and northwestern with an average speed of 7-10 m/s, and in summer - southeast with an average speed of up to 6 m/s. Windless periods are very rare (2% of the time). The features of the snow cover are greatly influenced by its redistribution by winds and fairly frequent thaws during the winter.


Relief and soil

The cluster sites of the Koryaksky Reserve "Govena Cape" and "Lavrova Bay" are located in the zone of the Koryak Highlands, and the "Parapolsky Dol" site is in the Penzhino-Anadyr Lowland.

The “Parapolsky Dol” section is stretched along the Parapolskaya Depression, a vast lowland composed of loose sedimentary deposits. The Parapolskaya lowland is heavily swamped and has a network of wide river valleys (2-13 km).

The Koryak highland combines mountain ranges and ridges of fold-block origin. Ranges and mountain ranges are strongly dissected by river and glacial erosion, with graben-like depressions and deep intermountain depressions. The relief of the Koryak Highlands is characterized by deep dissection (from 400 to 1000 m), heights of 2000-2500 m in its axial part and modern glaciation with an area of about 200 km².

The Koryak Upland consists of a system of mountain ranges cut by deep trough valleys. The intramountain basins of the Koryak Highlands have a gently hilly, small-ridged, accumulative relief of lacustrine-alluvial plains with a large number of lakes up to 0.5, less often 1 km² in area, with traces of Late Pleistocene glaciation in the form of sands and moraine ridges. Their peripheral parts adjoining the slopes are covered with a mantle of modern deposits of deluvial and alluvial-proluvial origin.

The tectonic structure of the Koryak fold zone is complex and varied. Structures from horst-block uplifts and anticlinoria to troughs, linear synclines and superimposed depressions are developed within its boundaries. The great complexity of the geological and tectonic structure of the Koryak mountain country determines the diversity of relief forms and hydrogeological structures. The Koryak Range is a very young formation with manifestations of Upper Cretaceous Tertiary volcanism.

The Parapolsky Dol and Cape Govena sites with the Lavrov Bay are located in different landscapes, so they are characterized by different types of soils. On Parapol, these are mainly peaty, swampy, frozen soils. In the Lavrov Bay and Cape Govin sites, there are peaty soils of plain and mountain tundra: soddy, loamy, frozen soils under thickets of dwarf pine; fragmentary and skeletal - on steep slopes and barrens under areas of dry tundra and stony wastelands with patchy vegetation.

In general, the soils of the reserve, although formed in harsh climatic conditions under the influence of tundra and forest-tundra vegetation, have satisfactory natural water-physical and biochemical qualities for the normal functioning of ecosystems.



The Koryaksky Reserve is distinguished by a rich hydrological network. This is especially true for the Parapolsky Dol section. Rivers and streams are numerous and full of water most of the year, their food is mainly snow. The density of the river network in Parapol is 1 km/km², almost all large reservoirs are connected to each other.

There are about 10,000 lakes in the Kuyul River basin, the largest of which is Lake Talovskoye with a surface area of 43.8 km². There are numerous lakes, both in river valleys and in intermountain depressions. The largest of them are Lake Potatgythyn (section of the Govin Peninsula) and Talovskoye (section of Parapolsky Dol). The valleys of the watercourses of the Govin Peninsula and Lavrov Bay sections are gorge-like, often with canyons and waterfalls. Most of the streams are mountainous.


Flora and vegetation

On the territory of the Koryaksky Reserve, 332 species of vascular plants, 92 species of bryophytes and 16 species of fungi, lichens and mushroom-like organisms have been noted. The vegetation of the study area is relatively poor in species. This is due to the isolation of the region in the postglacial period. The composition of tree species is dominated by species that have managed to survive from the pre-glacial period.

Flora and vegetation of the reserve are typical for the region as a whole. The northern part of the Kamchatka Territory, within which the Koryaksky Reserve is located, is included in the tundra zone with a transitional belt of pre-bald bushes and forest tundra. The belt of tall forests is represented here only by insular stone-birch forests and ribbon floodplain forests.

By the nature of the vegetation cover, the upper parts of the slopes of the mountain ranges of the Cape Govena and Lavrov Bay areas are part of the Berengian forest-tundra geobotanical region. The vegetation cover of the Parapolsky Dola site is also typical of the Beringian forest-tundra. In the mountains, the vertical zonality of vegetation is clearly expressed: sedge-cotton grass tundra and forests along river valleys in the forest belt; subalpine belt of elfin shrubs; alpine belt - alpine tundra, alpine meadows, nival vegetation of the bald belt. In general, forest-tundra prevails in the vegetation cover from the zonal vegetation, and swamps and meadows of various types from the azonal vegetation.



The appearance of the terriofauna of the Koryaksky Reserve is significantly depleted, primarily in true forest species. Typical tundra species are also poorly represented here. Of the predatory mammals in the reserve, the most common are the East Siberian brown bear and the Anadyr fox. Bears are found everywhere here: from the sea coast to the alpine belt. The fox prefers coastal and low-mountain habitats.

The polar wolf is rare, although before the extermination of this species in the late 60s of the last century, the wolf was distributed throughout the Koryak Upland. The mainland fox enters the reserve during migrations, when a significant number of animals descend from the northeastern regions of the Koryak Uplands and the Anadyr region to the Korfa Bay and the Parapolsky Dol. Sable and East Siberian (Yakutian) lynx occasionally visit the reserve.

Of the small predators on the territory of the reserve, the most common species is the East Siberian stoat. He lives everywhere, with the exception of lifeless mountain peaks and slopes. The Siberian weasel is rare in the reserve, and the northern river otter is also small in number.

Of the artiodactyls in the Koryak reserve, the Koryak bighorn sheep and Buturlin's (Kolyma) elk live. The Koryak Highlands is one of the powerful habitats of the bighorn sheep in the North-East of Asia, and one of the local groups is located within the borders of the Govena Peninsula. Elk is found mostly in the Parapolsky valley in the valleys of the Kuyul and Uinevayam rivers.

On Cape Govena there is one of the largest, but non-permanent coastal rookeries of sea lions, numbering from 300 to 2.5 thousand individuals. Animals lie here in spring and summer. On the coast of Cape Govena there are temporary feeding grounds for the Pacific walrus.

Ornithological complexes of moss-herbaceous tundras and valley forests are characteristic of the Parapolsky Dol, and an ornithological complex of rocky seashores is characteristic of the mountainous peninsula of Govena. The lake-marsh landscapes of the Parapolsky Dol are inhabited by 21 species of anseriformes, 15 of which are nesting. Among them are the black scaly, long-tailed duck, pintail, and wigeon. The total number of ducks is 100-120 thousand individuals. 14 species of waders nest in the reserve, the most numerous of which are fifi, dunlin, round-nosed phalarope. The ornithological complex of the lake-marsh landscapes of the Parapolsky Dol is one of the richest in the North-East of Asia.

Significant areas of poplar-chozenia forests grow in the lower reaches of the large rivers of the Parapola, where typical taiga species nest - remez bunting, lentil, brown warbler, nuthatch, small flycatcher and others. Their populations are mosaic, divided into separate "islands", but the total number of species is quite high. The white-tailed eagle nests in the floodplain forests. In general, 35 nesting bird species are represented in the forest complex of the reserve.

About 30 colonies of seabirds with a total number of more than 12 thousand pairs are located on the rocky seashores of the Gauvin coast. Peregrine falcons nest near bird markets, and gyrfalcons nest along the rocky slopes of river valleys.

On the territory of the reserve lie the main ways of passage of birds. Mostly auks, cormorants, gulls, waders and sea ducks migrate along the coastal strip of the Bering Sea, and geese, ducks and swans migrate along the Parapolsky Dol. The passage along the Parapolsky Dol reaches its greatest intensity in spring. Autumn migration passes gradually and is not so noticeable.

The reservoirs of the Parapolsky Dol - Lake Talovskoye and the Kuyul River - are distinguished by a special wealth of freshwater ichthyofauna. They are inhabited by about 20 species of fish, among which pike predominates in abundance. Whitefish are represented on Parapol by such species as pyzhyan, Penzhinsky omul, teal, valek and Siberian vendace. Whitefish are not represented anywhere else in this composition in Kamchatka.

The Penzhina omul is an endemic of Northern Koryakia - it is not found anywhere except for the Penzhina and Talovka basins (including Lake Kuyul). From anadromous salmon to Lake Talovskoye, chum salmon, pink salmon and sockeye salmon rise in small numbers. In addition, kunja and char are constantly living here. In the Kuyula basin, Kamchatka grayling is common, minnow, burbot, lake and small-mouth smelt, nine- and three-spined stickleback, lamprey, and sculpin goby are found. In the rivers and lakes of the Govena Peninsula, pink salmon, chum salmon and sockeye salmon are the most abundant. Almost all the rivers of this region are spawning.