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January 22, 2022, 09:06

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Winter routes of animals can be traced by their footprints in the snow. This helps Mospriroda specialists keep records of animals, determine their number and species composition.

Mospriroda specialists carry out winter census of animals in the natural areas of the capital. Since the end of last year, when a stable snow cover appeared, they have been able to identify nine species of animals in their tracks. The census of forest dwellers in the presence of snow will last until mid-March.

Numerous squirrels and rare brown hares

According to preliminary estimates, squirrels have become the most common forest dwellers in the capital. Their traces were recorded in the Kuzminki-Lyublino, Izmailovo and Kosinsky, Moskvoretsky natural areas, in the Bitsevsky forest, in the Altufevsky complex reserve, in the Medvedkovsky and Severny nature reserves, in the Lianozovsky landscape reserve “.

Experts also discovered hare hares, which are listed in the Red Book of Moscow under the first category. Animal footprints were seen in six natural areas of the city: in the Skhodnya River Valley in Kurkino, Severny, Zelenogradsky nature reserves and in the Moskvoretsky, Izmailovo and Kosinsky natural and historical parks.

Census of the Red Book: what rare animals are found in the natural areas of the capital

Who else lives in the forest in winter

Specialists also recorded traces of weasels in the Kuzminki-Lublino and Bitsevsky Forest natural and historical parks, as well as common beaver in Ostankino. Both animals are listed in the Red Book of Moscow under the third category.

Field mice and voles have been spotted in the natural and historical parks Moskvoretsky and Bitsevsky Forest. In the latter we saw shrews and traces of wild boars this year.

It is impossible to imagine the forests of Moscow without ordinary foxes. They managed to leave traces in the natural areas “Valley of the Setun River”, “Kuzminki-Lyublino”, “Bitsevsky Forest” and in the landscape reserve “Valley of the River Skhodnya in Kurkino”.

Accounting for animals in the capital’s forests

Specialists carry out winter route accounting in order to assess the quality and stability of natural areas as ecosystems, to determine the number of animals and their species composition. Snow cover is required for the census, on which the animals leave their tracks. From year to year, the routes of animals do not change, this helps to minimize the error in the calculations.

Muscovites can find out what animals and where they can be found in city parks and forests with the help of winter route accounting data. This is useful for photography enthusiasts who take portraits of forest dwellers.

EDITOR’S NOTE: This article is a translation. Apologies should the grammar and or sentence structure not be perfect.

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