Lots of willows and a few willow trees
Ülle Reier makes an introduction to the Tree of the Year; the willow tree. There are 15 species of willows in Estonia and some 450 species in the world, but people do not know them well and usually consider all willows as bothersome brushwood species. The author gives a detailed and interesting overview of different species, of different looks and leaves, as well as the diverse use of willows among people.
How many mires are in Estonia?
Raimo Pajula rebuts the myth of Estonia being rich in mires. In fact, alive mires cover only 6% of the non-aquatic territory of the country. Statistically, however, it is known that mires cover 22% of the territory. Where does such a difference come from? About half of this 22% is forest land – mostly drained peatland forests and drained and afforested treeless peatland mires. A research carried out for designating the Natura 2000 mire habitat types gave a rough estimation of only 6-7% of Estonian territory being covered with natural mires. Most wide-spread mire type is bogs, followed by ruined, but renewable bogs and paludified peatland forests.
Ostracods – a way to explain the development of a lake
Kadri Sohar introduces small invertebrates, whose remnants provide good material for getting an insight into past vegetation and other biota. Limnic ostracods, namely their calcite chambers are very helpful in determining the history of a lake. The article is illustrated with a case study from Lake Pikkjärv, in Vooremaa.
Vääna landscape protection area
Hanno Zingel describes a territory near Tallinn with unique landscape and diverse bird fauna. The Vääna landscape protection area is situated on a klint terrace and the vegetation is therefore rather specific. Most interesting habitat type is Potentilla fruticosa alvar, a semi-natural heritage landscape type.
Eesti Loodus enquires
Sven-Erik Enno sketches the activities of a new network of thunderstorm observers.
Tiit Lepp analyzes the relationship between nature photographers and the magazine Cheese.
Interview: The distribution atlas will never be entirely finished
Raimu Hanson has interviewed the editors of Estonian Plant Distribution Atlas, Tiiu Kull and Toomas Kukk.
Some details of the private life of the famous geologists of the University of Tartu
Mati Laane takes a glance into the family history of famous Baltic German geologists. Almost all of them were kinsmen or had other types of relations. The article is supplemented with an exciting chart of genealogy of the von Sivers family and some famous geologists over generations.
Essay: Leave no trace by Kalevi Kull
Maardu manor and park
Heldur Sander takes the reader to the surroundings of Tallinn, to Maardu manor house and park. The Baroque manor ensemble, one of the oldest in Estonia, was built in 1660ies. The surrounding park, although much younger in age, has a number of botanical surprises. Most of the trees were probably planted in the middle of the 19th century.
Hunting for dragons and toads
Riinu Rannap and Piret Pappel write about the ways of life and current status of the newt Triturus cristatus and the spadefoot toad in the Haanja Nature Park. It turnes out that these species are not doing very well, and the main reason seems to be the decline of suitable small waterbodies and the changed physical and biological parameters of these.
Three-toed woodpecker, the inhabitant of old forests
Sven Zaèek was lucky enough to meet one of the rarest woodpeckers of our old forests. Moreover, he caught some close-up photographs of the feeding family. The author also describes how the woodpecker family lived and behaved.
The Vaidasoo meteorite crater
Jaanus Terasmaa shares fresh information about a possible meteorite crater in Harju County. However, more research has to be carried out in order to assure this finding.