Polish beech forest included on UNESCO World Heritage List

A beech forest in the Bieszczady Mountains, in the South-east corner of Poland, has been placed on UNESCO’s World Heritage List, the organisation’s World Heritage Committee has announced.

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“Bziuki” from Koprzywnica in the province of Świętokrzyskie, southern Poland, had been inscribed to the national UNESCO Intangible Cultural...

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The forest, covering an area of approximately 3,300 hectares, located in the Bieszczady National Park, was included in the European “Ancient and Primeval Beech Forests of the Carpathians and Other Regions of Europe,” site.

As stated in the announcement, the site now comprises 94 component parts across 18 countries such as Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Czech Republic, France, North Macedonia and Switzerland.

Beech forests in Albania, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Germany, Italy, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain and Ukraine were already included on the list.

In the opinion of naturalists, the primaeval beech forests in the Carpathians are an example of an intact forest complex of the temperate climate zone and at the same time the most complete ecological system of European beech forests. They are also considered an invaluable reservoir of genetic material not only of beech trees, but also of many other species associated with this type of forest habitat.

“The extended property represents an outstanding example of relatively undisturbed, complex temperate forests and exhibits a wide spectrum of comprehensive ecological patterns and processes of pure and mixed stands of European beech across a variety of environmental conditions,” UNESCO pointed out in a press release.

The Bieszczady National Park covers an area of almost 30,000 hectares, making it the third biggest national park in Poland. It is the habitat of the brown bear, wolf and lynx, as well as a range of predatory birds.

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