Primorsky Kray hosts one of the most diverse forest ecosystems in Russia that protect a significant portion of the region's biodiversity. Mixed broadleaf coniferous forests are the last remaining habitat for the Far Eastern leopard and the Amur tiger. Historic and current development rates in the region raise questions, however, about the future conservation value of these forest ecosystems. Thus, a project by International Socio-Ecological Union, Biodiversity Conservation Center, WWF and WRI was initiated to map high conservation value forests (HCVF) to aid regional conservation strategies and to update protected area systems. The highest conservation priority should be given to those ecosystems that are most endangered: the least disturbed forests whose total area is decreasing with each passing year.

In formulating a research plan, one discussed the following forest ecosystem categories:

  • Less disturbed forest tracts
  • Floodplain and bottomland ecosystems of intact river basins
  • Naturally rare and unique forest communities
  • Rare and endangered plant species habitats
In mapping HCVF in Primorsky Kray, one focused on identifying forests important in the effort to preserve natural vegetation and its biodiversity.

The total area of identified HCVF (without intact forest landscapes) made up 2.94 million hectares, or 17.8% of the region's area. Rare forest communities total area is almost at 195 thousand hectares. Altogether more than 1600 habitats of rare and endangered vascular plant species were identified. The most endangered vegetation types, especially in comparison to the relatively small area they occupy, are Manchurian fir and mixed formations in the very south of the region.

Publication* "Mapping High Conservation Value Forests of Primorsky Kray, Russian Far East".

Cover: Text part (without maps):

The cartographic part of the publication* is available in different formats:

*NOTE! Publication and maps are available only in Russian, interactive map is available in English.


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