|Central coordinates||23o 54.00' East 52o 39.00' North|
|IBA criteria||A1, B2, B3|
|Altitude||145 - 202m|
|Year of IBA assessment||2005|
Ornithological information A total of 253 bird species have been recorded. Almost all 75 bird species listed in the National Red Data Book occur. The site hosts the following globally-threatened species: White-tailed Eagle Haliaeetus albicilla, Greater Spotted Eagle Aquila clanga, and Aquatic Warbler Acrocephalus paludicola.
Site description Belovezhskaia Pushcha is Europe's last largest complex of primeval forests, typical of the forests that once covered middle Europe. Belovezhskaia Pushcha retains virgin forests with its typical flora and fauna. Ancient forests dominate by area, which is untypical for Belarusian woods. The average age of the trees is 90 years old, but trees that are 200-250 years old are very common.
|Species||Season||Period||Population estimate||Quality of estimate||IBA Criteria||IUCN Category|
|Black Stork Ciconia nigra||breeding||2001||15-20 breeding pairs||good||B2||Least Concern|
|White Stork Ciconia ciconia||breeding||2001||220-250 breeding pairs||good||B2||Least Concern|
|European Honey-buzzard Pernis apivorus||breeding||2001||15-25 breeding pairs||good||B3||Least Concern|
|Lesser Spotted Eagle Aquila pomarina||breeding||2001||30-40 breeding pairs||good||B2||Least Concern|
|Greater Spotted Eagle Aquila clanga||breeding||2001||1-2 breeding pairs||good||A1||Vulnerable|
|Eurasian Eagle-owl Bubo bubo||resident||2001||12-20 breeding pairs||good||B2||Least Concern|
|Protected area||Designation||Area (ha)||Relationship with IBA||Overlap with IBA (ha)|
|Belovezhskaya Pushcha / Bialowieza Forest||World Heritage Site||92,676||protected area contained by site||5,500|
|Belovezhskaya Pushcha Biosphere Reserve||UNESCO-MAB Biosphere Reserve||191,300||protected area contains site||87,400|
|Belowezskaya Pushcha||National Park||87,607||protected area contains site||87,400|
|IUCN habitat||Habitat detail||Extent (% of site)|
|Forest||Alluvial and very wet forest; Broadleaved deciduous woodland; Native coniferous woodland||92%|
|Wetlands (inland)||Fens, transition mires and springs; Raised bogs; Rivers and streams; Standing freshwater||7%|
|Land-use||Extent (% of site)|
|nature conservation and research||80%|
Other biodiversity The fauna of the Park includes 59 mammal, 28 fish, 11 amphibian and 7 reptile species. European Bison Bison bonasus is the pride and beauty of the IBA. At present, there are about 300 individual bisons in the Park. The high soil diversity means that the Park has an outstanding variety of plants. The vascular plant species includes about 900 species, with more than 40 of those listed in the National Red Data Book. Tree species include Silver Fir Abies alba, Durmast Oak Quercus petraea, Wych Elm Ulmus glabra, and Marn Elm Ulmus laevis. The rare shrub species listed in the National Red Data Book include Common Ivy Hedera helix, German Broom Genista germanica, and Whortleberry Willow Salix myrtilloides.
Management considerations Drainage of part of the Park and the surrounding areas was carried out in 1950-60s. As a result, the groundwater table has dropped significantly. Destruction of the undergrowth by an over-abundance of hoofed animals, whose proliferation is attributed to artificial feeding and over-hunting of large predators, such as Wolves. Forestry Economic activities have intensified since the re-organization of the zapovednik into a National Park. This is one of the most serious threats to the ecosystems. Chemical air pollution Belovezhskaia Pushcha is a natural barrier to pollutants migrating in the atmosphere. Precipitation of heavy metals on the IBA's forests threatens these natural habitats. Commercial collection of mushrooms, berries and medicinal plants undermines the feeding base of many animals and contributes to disturbance.
Protection status National Conservation Status: A Belarusian State Zapovednik "Belovezhskaia Pushcha" was established in 1939. In 1957, it was re-organized into a hunting and conservation reserve. In 1990, a National Park was established. International Conservation Status: In 1992 the site was included in the UNESCO World Heritage List.A transborder biosphere reserve was established in 1993. An IBA was established in 1998 (code BY009, criteria À1, Â2, Â3).
References A.Kozulin, L.Vergeichik, M.Nikiforov and others. Treasures of Belarusian nature.- Minsk, 2002. -160 p.
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Recommended citation BirdLife International (2013) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Bielaviežškaja Pušča. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 24/05/2013
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