Phosphate as a natural resource of Estonia
Enno Reinsalu convinces the reader of the possibility of mining Estonian phosphate resources in case additional research is to be carried out and modern technology is to be used. The author first gives a history of phosphate mining in Estonia. For now, our phosphate resources are considered as not to be mined. But the author points out that not all the potential fields and locations are thoroughly researched. Moreover, in the 25 years that have passed since the last “Phosphate War”, technology has improved considerably, local people are out of work and the need for phosphate is big in the world.
Phosphate mining is not possible at the moment
Rein Raudsep has an opposite opinion about phosphate mining. He explains why all of the phosphate resources of Estonia are considered as passive resources and brings some clarity to some of the issues raised in the previous article.
The perspectives and risks of phosphate mining: an example of the Kingissepa Deposit
Ivar Puura takes a look at neighbours’ experience: the economic profitability is very uncertain and debatable. He discusses the economic opportunities and risks of the phosphate mining in the global context and environmental hazards of the Kingissepp deposit in NW Russia, including the average annual phosphorus input to the Gulf of Finland exceeding 1000 t, discovered by the HELCOM researchers.
Estonian Nature enquires
Terje Tuisk and Liina Raju write about the objectives of Estonian Research Council to popularize sciences.
Mercator 500: the Flemish cartographer who became the Father of Atlas
Heino Mardiste reminds the famous cartographer, whose map of Livonia is one of the most detailed historical maps of our area. Mercator’s activity overlapped with the rapid development of Flemish cartography in the second half of the 16th century. He compiled and engraved all the pages of the first atlas of the world. His map of Livonia, published in 1595, is of special interest to us. The place names on the map mostly refer to strongholds. The article provides a modern map reflecting the place names of Mercator’s map of Livonia.
The courtship manners of birds
Tuul Sepp observes the courtship rituals which help birds finding the right mate. The courtship manners can roughly be divided into two groups based on family pattern. The first group, about 90% of bird species takes care of their offspring together: for those species it is crucial to find the best mate. There are also species among which only the female birds take care of the offspring: in this case, the females decide which male they want to be the father of their fledglings. The article with colorful photographs provides interesting examples of mating rituals of different bird species of the world.
Only the strongest can survive in sand
Siim Sepp continues describing the sands of the world: which minerals are the main components of sands? Most of the minerals found in sands have emerged in lithosphere, which consists almost entirely of only 8 chemical elements, oxygen and silicon being the most common of them. Therefore, most minerals contain at least one or more of these 8 elements. The author describes a number of most common or interesting minerals making up sands, illustrated with colorful close-ups.
Interview: The knowing of nature begins from school
Toomas Kukk has interviewed Uudo Timm, the researcher and protector of nature.
Who inhabit the science centre “Ahhaa”?
Katre Palo shares impressions from the Tartu science center “Ahhaa”: ants, marine ecosystem and hatching birds. The most difficult and challenging inhabitants are ants. They first remodeled the whole nest in a few months, but seem quite happy now. The other interesting miniature ecosystem is fit into a large aquarium: unlike home aquariums, it is a marine habitat introducing the biota of the Red Sea. The most popular sight of the center is the hatching house of chicken, where one can really observe the whole hatching process.
Hiking trail: In the forests of Tudusoo
Tõnu Jürgenson takes the reader to the surprisingly little known place in western Virumaa: the surroundings of Lake Tudu. The area is taken under nature protection to safeguard three neighbouring mires. Beautiful Lake Tudu, a large bog lake, is situated in the middle of the central mire: the Järvesuu mire. There is a lovely cabin with a place of a camp fire by the lakeside. Further north, in the Punasoo mire, there is a 5 km hiking trail with 7 sights of interest and two pavilions for resting.
Captain Scott did not hurry
Tiiu Speek complements the story of Amundsen’s journey to the South Pole: in fact, there was not much competition between Amundsen and Robert Scott. Instead, Scott’s team was very focused on scientific research, mostly weather observations and mapping of studied areas. Scott realized that Amundsen would reach the South Pole first, and did not want to compete with him, but rather fulfill his own objectives. Herbert Pointing, a photographer, played a very important role in the expedition: his photographs give a valuable and interesting insight into such a difficult and long expedition.
Practical tips: Waiting for the Northern lights
Remo Savisaar calls upon looking in the sky at night: the Northern lights are not that uncommon on our latitudes and it is possible to catch quite good photos of the phenomenon. The author shares some tips of how to set your camera in order to get the most out the amazing natural phenomenon.