PNRP 39(3) – 2020 r.


Vegetation cover of selected mid-forest ponds in Narol commune (Roztocze)


Pond flora and plant formations are valuable elements of the natural environment deserving special protection due to their important ecological functions. This paper presents the results of analyses of the vegetation of four mid-forest ponds from Narol commune. All objects are under protection as ecological sites. They were established to protect the remains of natural ecosystems of mid-forest lakes, which are important for the preservation of species biodiversity, types of environments, and unique genetic resources.
The water reservoirs in the study area have not been subjected to detailed botanical analyses to date; hence, the aim of the study was to characterise the vegetation of selected mid-forest ponds in Narol commune. The field study was carried out in the 2019 growing season. It consisted in preparation of floristic inventories of vascular plants and mosses, and phytosociological relevés using the Braun-Blanquet method.
The analysis of the flora of the ponds revealed the presence of six species of mosses and 194 species of vascular plants. The vascular flora of the studied objects was dominated by native species (183) representing 94.3% of the total flora. The inconsiderable number of alien species evidences the high naturalness of the flora, which is confirmed by the flora anthropophytization index (5.6%). Nearly half of all the life forms were represented by hemicryptophytes (49.5%), whereas the other groups accounted for a small percentage. The inventory of the ponds revealed the presence of two strictly protected species (Drosera rotundifolia and Trapa natans) and seven partially protected species (Lycopodium annotinum, Nymphaea alba, Pyrola minor, Pleurozium schreberi, Polytrichum strictum, Sphagum fallax and Sphagnum palustre). There were also 4 taxa of endangered species (Drosera rotundifolia, Lycopodium annotinum, Utricularia vulgaris and Trapa natans).
Based on the 46 analysed phytosociological relevés, 13 plant communities were distinguished: Potametum natantis, Nupharo-Nymphaeetum albae, Scirpetum lacustris, Sagittario-Sparganietum emersi, Eleocharitetum palustris, Phragmitetum australis, Typhetum latifoliae, Glycerietum maximae, Caricetum gracilis, Caricetum vesicariae, Phalaridetum arundinaceae and Sparganio-Glycerietum fluitantis, and a community with Sphagnum fallax. Most of them are plant phytocoenoses that are common in the country, with the exception of the community with Sphagnum fallax, which is one of the disappearing oligotrophic peatbogs.


The state of knowledge of bees (Hymenoptera, Apoidea, Apiformes)
inhabiting landscape parks in central Poland


Based on literature data and unpublished material, the current state of knowledge of bee fauna is presented in 9 landscape parks of central Poland: Bolimów Landscape Park, Brudzeń Landscape Park, Gostynin-Włocławek Landscape Park, Warta-Widawka Landscape Park, Wzniesienia Łódzkie Landscape Park, Przedbórz Landscape Park, Spała Landscape Park, Sulejów Landscape Park and Załęcze Landscape Park. 265 species of bees were found in total, which constitutes 55% of domestic fauna in this group of insects. The species diversity of bees is best known in Wzniesienia Łódzkie Landscape Park (186 taxa), Bolimów Landscape Park (144) and Warta-Widawka Landscape Park (133).
In the analysed community of bees, 40 species (15.1%) belong to the taxa that is endangered with extinction in Poland. The highest percentage of endangered species was found in bee fauna in Gostynin-Włocławek Landscape Park - 13.8%, Spała Landscape Park - 13.0%[E1]  and Warta-Widawka Landscape Park - 12.0%. It is worth noting that Sphecodes marginatus, has the status of an extinct species (category EX), which was recorded in 4 parks in central Poland. While the critically endangered (CR) Amegilla quardifasciata has been found in the [E2] recent years in Stanisławów, in the vicinity of [E3] Spała Landscape Park.
This paper presents the causes as to why bees are endangered in the open landscape. Active protection methods used in saving bees of landscape parks are also discussed.


Fish fauna of the nature reserves in Wda Landscape Park


We conducted a fish survey in lakes in two nature reserves located in the Wda Landscape Park. All fish were caught in accordance with the European standard (CEN 2005) by using benthic and pelagic multi-mesh gillnets. The different mesh sizes allow a wide range of fish sizes to be caught, and can be used to estimate the size structure of fish populations in a cost-effective way. A total of 18 fish species belonging to five families were confirmed in the three lakes. The lakes, which differ in origin and morphometric features, had different fish species compositions, densities, and composition structures. The species abundance of the fish in the lakes ranged from four to 16 species. Only Rudd (Scardinius erythrophthalmus) occurred in all of the lakes. The greatest species abundance was confirmed in the lake that is connected to the Wda River. These lakes, which are elements of the Wda Landscape Park, play important roles in the preservation of fish species that are rare and threatened with extinction. The nature preserve of Lake Piaseczno plays the most important role of the lakes analysed in protecting rare fish species; however, all three lakes are important natural elements in the protection of regional fish fauna. The significant differences among the lakes are important factors in maintaining the overall diversity of the regional ichthyofauna.


  Can an otter (Lutra lutra) inhabit dystrophic lakes?


  The research was conducted in Wigry National Park in the period from 26/06 to 10/12/2019. In the year preceding the study (2018) the otter inventory was conducted (Romanowski et al. 2018) using the standard testing method. On all reservoirs and watercourses of the Park 59 inventory points were designated. The results of the inventory showed the presence of otters in the area covering 39 inventory points. The otter was found on 22 lakes with limnological types: meso-eutrophic, eutrophic, ponds and on all rivers of the Park, as well as in the area of 3 inventory points designated on drainage ditches. The lakes where no otters were found were all "suchary" - dystrophic lakes. The hydrochemical habitat conditions prevailing in most dystrophic lakes of Wigry National Park are conducive to maintaining the disharmony of these aquatic ecosystems, which affects the small species diversity of fish, which are the basic food of the otter. That is why in 2019, in order to verify the obtained results, photo-traps as well as a natural attractant for predators were placed in the area of all "suchary" lakes of the Park. Otters were attracted using the secretions of the castor sacs (castoreum) and anal glands of the European beaver. On the shores of 19 dystrophic lakes, 1 research plot was established. During the whole research period, the attractant was supplemented three times next to the camera traps. In addition, the impact of the availability of the basic food - fish on settling the reservoir by otter was analysed. The research also attempted to indicate whether the occurrence of otter in "suchary" lakes is affected by anthropogenic factors and the distance of these dystrophic reservoirs from large lakes and unregulated rivers.
Camera traps located by 19 dystrophic lakes showed the presence of otters in the area of 6 lakes. In most cases (5 research areas), the presence of otters was recorded in the late autumn - November (one research area - in July). In each of these cases the presence of otters was registered once. It was found that the abundance of fish species, which constitute the basic food of the otter throughout the year, does not affect the presence of otters in the area of "suchary" lakes. In most cases, the otter was found on dystrophic lakes with the least fish species diversity. Analysing the spatial distribution of species in the Park, it was found that the presence of otters is not affected by human pressure in the form of residential and farm buildings. It has also been shown that the distance from large lakes and unregulated rivers can affect the presence of otters in areas of dystrophic lakes. As many as 3 out of 6 such lakes where this species was recorded are located less than 200 m away. The analysis of the results also showed that drainage ditches can direct the migration of animals towards "suchary" lakes.



Doctor of Białowieża bison
On the 30th anniversary of the death of Wiaczesław Demiaszkiewicz (1907-1990)

Find and save the last European bison -  what is known about the mission of Herman Knothe
in Białowieża Primeval Forest in 1919?


The article presents the mission of Herman Knothe to Białowieża Primeval Forest in March 1919. Emerging Polish authorities entrusted Knothe, a naturalist and hunter, with the task of finding the last European bison in the forest of Białowieża to save the species. The mission failed: the last observed bison was killed by poachers. The description of the mission was prepared at the request of Jan Sztolcman, who later published it. Thanks to Knothe's mission, both the date of killing one of the last Białowieża bison and the efforts undertaken by the Polish administration to save the species are known. Later, Herman Knothe took an active part in the restitution of European bison in Białowieża Primeval Forest.