Expedition finds new habitats of protected species in Tatarstan’s northeast – Kazan Federal University


State Committee of Tatarstan for Biological Resources commissioned KFU to explore the biological diversity in Agryz Municipal District.

From 14 to 18 August, the team headed by Professor Tatiana Rogova toured the district, which is noted for its taiga biomes and heavy forestation. Agryz, being for the northeasternmost municipality of our province, is not often studied by biologists and ecologists.

The scientists studied local bryophytes for the first time ever. Bryophyte expert, Associate Professor Nadia Shafigullina, informs that they found more than 30 species of leafy mosses and 10 species of liverworts.

“The bryoflora of Agryz district can be characterized as hemiboreal, with a high potential for conservation of many rare for Tatarstan taiga moss species. Cutting down old-growth forests, which are refugia for such species, reduces the habitats available to them; therefore, the possibility of creating new protected areas in the area should be considered. A rare species of Nekkera pinnatum, listed in the Red Data Book of the Republic of Tatarstan, and Anomodon longifolia, listed in the Red Data Book Annex as a rare and vulnerable taxon in need of constant monitoring, were found at two sites. The list of species will be expanded as the collected material is processed,” she comments.

Local mushrooms have also not been studied before. Senior Lecturer Kim Potapov says that despite dry weather during the expedition he found over 80 species of fungi, including two from the Red Data Book – Polyporus umbellatus and Rhodonia placenta.

“The foundation of the identified species diversity is made up of boreals confined to coniferous and deciduous tree species. The most diverse species are cheese borers, fly mushrooms, bolus mushrooms and some other genera. Agryz district is being studied for the first time in terms of mushroom diversity, so all the data obtained are an important basis for compiling a regional list. Mushrooms are a difficult object to define, so the task of the next weeks is to clarify and identify the collected material, but it is already clear that among them there are species new to Tatarstan. A mushroom with a very remarkable appearance was found on pine deadwood – Hydnomerulius pinastri. Undoubtedly, one expedition trip is not enough to form a clear picture of the mycobiota of Agryz District; regular observations for several years are needed. However, it is obvious that the forests of the area have a significant mycobiotic potential,” he notes.

Kichke Tan (“Dusk” in Tatar) natural reserve was studied for the presence of Chiroptera. All the found specimens appeared to be smooth-nosed bats.

A couple (female and male) of Red-nosed Vesper Bat ended up in the survey. Previously, this species was not in the Red Data Book of the Republic of Tatarstan, but observations in recent years indicate a sharp decline in its numbers in the regions of the province The fact that we managed to catch and describe two specimens was a great success. Materials are being prepared to include the species in the new edition of the Red Data Book.

Botanical surveys confirmed the growth of rare and protected plant species, in addition, new red-listed species not previously recorded in the area were identified – Succisa pratensis, Najas marína, Lycopodium annotínum, Botrychium multifidum, and Actaea erythrocarpa. Professor of the Department of General Ecology Marina Fardeeva conducted population surveys of a rare bryophilous orchid species – Neottianthe cucullata.

“In total, about 200 individuals were observed in the cenopopulations of the species – the populations are stable, all age groups are found, which indicates good seed renewal, some specimens were still flowering. Percentage of fruiting up to 70-90 percent, which is achieved only in favorable conditions. Orchid growing areas are adjacent to the boundary of the Kichke-Tan reserve and currently have no protection status. It is necessary to consider the possibility of expanding the territory of the reserve to include the surveyed sites,” opines Fardeeva.

Galiya Shaikhutdinova, Associate Professor of the Department of General Ecology and organizer of the expedition, states that the results of observations and field surveys show how distinctive, rich and diverse the biota of the Agryz District is. Its natural treasures have been revealed only to a small extent and are waiting for further study. Some natural complexes are unique for the republic and are not found anywhere else. Such are the small fragments of floodplain dark coniferous forests preserved in the reserve, which ensure the survival of Siberian fir. Everywhere in the province the Siberian fir was severely damaged and almost disappeared from stands after the dry summer of 2010, but here it feels perfectly well and is reliably renewed.


Source link

Similar Posts