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4 Dec 2017

International experts to visit Belovezhskaya Pushcha in 2018

BREST, 4 December (BelTA) – Belovezhskaya Pushcha will host international experts in 2018, BelTA learned from Vasily Arnolbik, deputy director general of the national park.

Experts of the World Heritage Center and the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources will examine the transboundary site. According to Vasily Arnolbik, the mission will be sent to help handle the situation with the European spruce bark beetle: decline and dieback of spruce trees and the forestry activity which is currently underway in the Polish part of Belovezhskaya Pushcha. “The mission dates have not yet been defined. I think that it will be scheduled for May or June to take stock of the situation in a proper way. I suppose that the expert evaluation of both parts of the transboundary site will take place during one visit of experts,” the deputy director general noted.

Belarus and Poland drew up a joint report for the 41st session of the UNESCO World Heritage Committee in Krakow, he added. The structure and content of the report were discussed by relevant ministries of Belarus and Poland. “The bark beetle issue was not prioritized. We drew attention to the fact that the size of the protected area has increased and Belarus operates it in line with the criteria for its outstanding universal value,” Vasily Arnolbik remarked.

Warsaw is set to host the first international science conference on fighting bark beetle outbreak in Belovezhskaya Pushcha on 4 December. The conference is designed to evaluate scientific achievements and a feasibility study into sanitation cutting in protected forest areas, and also work out recommendations to protect Belovezhskaya Poshcha from bark beetles. The event will draw together internationally acclaimed experts in forest ecology with first-hand experience in invertebrate outbreaks. The position of Belarusian scientists on the problem will be represented by Alexander Pugachevsky, director of the Kuprevich Institute of Experimental Botany.

Ahead of the conference, the participants went on a field tour to the Bialowieza National Park (Poland).


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