During the last decades, the Carpathians have been experiencing increasing losses as a result of human activity. The Carpathian forests are under threat of extinction not only due to deforestation and undue grazing of cattle on fields but also due to chemical pollution and acid rain, which are produced by the activities of industrial enterprises. Accordingly, there are changes in the flora and fauna of the region.
More than one and a half thousand objects of the nature reserve fund with an area of almost half a million hectares have been created in order to preserve the unique nature of the Carpathians. One of the oldest objects of the nature reserve fund of Ukraine is the Carpathian Biosphere Reserve. It was founded in 1968 to preserve unique areas of wild nature, among which beech forests are particularly valuable for Europe. It has been part of the international network of UNESCO biosphere reserves since 1993. The task of the reserve is to protect and restore endangered flora and fauna, including endemics of the Ukrainian part of the Carpathians. Within the reserve, there are the largest areas of beech and beech-fir-spruce primeval forests in Europe, the “Valley of Narcissus”, the largest karst caves of the Ukrainian Carpathians. There’re Edelweiss and Carpathian rhododendron growing here, large populations of Carpathian brown bear, lynx, forest cat, golden eagle, and many other rare and endangered species that are protected.
The high level of biodiversity of the Carpathian region, and a significant number of rare and endangered species and endemics make our region unique, encourage a deeper study of the flora and fauna, and require effective protection measures. It’s no coincidence that the eco-event held was dedicated to the topic of studying the nature of the Carpathians, which was prepared by Olga Velichkanych (head of the department of biology and research and experimental work of the TRENCSY), an expert of the IRCEF.
During the event, the children received interesting information about the Carpathian Mountains, the unique highlights of our region, the flora and fauna of the region, and also analyzed the negative impact of human activity on nature. Together they discussed ways to reduce the anthropogenic impact on the environment. The young conservationists demonstrated excellent knowledge of the flora and fauna of Transcarpathia, performing tasks at stops. Namely: they solved the “Insects” crossword, practiced their knowledge of the birds of Ukraine and plants of Transcarpathia listed in the Red Book, and made up a proverb about the need to be careful with the natural resources of the region and preserve nature. Young entomologists had the opportunity to find and examine insects under a magnifying glass, using special magnifiers with a jar. In memory of the eco-event, each participant received badges and certificates for successfully completing the tasks of the quest.
The meeting was held within the framework of the project “Responsibility for Creation and Women of the Carpathians”, which is implemented by the Interreligious and Environmental Civil Forum of Eastern Europe (IRCEF) (headed by Alexander Bokotey) and the Ecological Commission of Mukachevo Greek Catholic Eparchy in cooperation with the Archdiocese of Bamberg (Erzbistum Bamberg), the Diocese of Würzburg (Bistum Würzburg) and Renovabis (Organization for Assistance to Eastern Europe from the Catholic Church in Germany).
Informational Service of IRCEF: Olga Velychkanych, Head of the Department of Biology and Research-Experimental Work of TRENCSY