Vasyugan Mire (swamp) is one of the largest swamps in the world located in the interfluve of the Ob and Irtysh Rivers on the territory of the Vasyugan plain situated in the limits of Tomsk, Novosibirsk and Omsk Regions. It is a natural phenomenon that has no analogues in the world. The total area of the swamp is about 53 thousand square kilometers (the size of Switzerland). Its extent from West to East is 573 kilometers, from North to South – 320 kilometers.
Vasyugan Mire appeared nearly 10 thousand years ago and from that time they constantly increase. 75 % of their contemporary area became waterlogged less than 500 years ago. The swamp is the main source of fresh water in the region (water reserves here are equal to 400 km³). Nearly 800 thousand of small lakes are located here. The great number of rivers spring from the swamp.
The swamp is located in the transitional belt between small-leaved forests subzone and zone of the Southern taiga.
The swamp contains huge reserves of peat and counteracts to the green-house effect, because it fixes the carbon. The prospected peat reserves make up more than 1 billion tones, their middle depth of bedding is 2.4 meters, and maximum is 10 meters.
Wildlife of the Swamp
Vasyugan Mire is a home for a numerous local fauna including the rare species. Such rare animal species as reindeer, golden eagle, white-tailed eagle, fish hawk, great grey shrike and peregrine inhabit the swamp in particular. There is a big number of squirrel, elk, sable, wood grouse, willow grouse, hazel-grouse, black grouse and smaller number of mink, otter and glutton. Flora also includes rare and endangered species of plants and plant communities. Cranberries, bog bilberries, cloudberries are widely spread among wild plants.
Lack of settlements on this difficult of access territory provides high level of eco-systems safety and of their biological diversity.