Goshawk needs peace
Renno Nellis and Eedi Lelov introduce the bird of the year – Goshawk. This bird of prey has recently earned a lot of attention from nature conservationists because of its rapidly decreasing numbers. The reasons behind the rapid decline a still unknown. This bird, with the Estonian name “chicken hawk”, is a threat to hen on farms. However, the bird itself is rather shy and usually stays hidden in the forest. The cover story of the Goshawk gives a thorough overview of the biology, area of distribution, habits and migration of the species. Additionally, the authors would appreciate any information on Goshawk’s nests in Estonia on Renno:Nellis@mail.ee
Estonian Nature enquires
Tiiu Kull writes about the activities of the Estonian Orchid Club.
Heino Luik considers the capacity of Estonian forests to provide the new pulp-and-paper industry with aspen timber.
The puzzles of human evolution: neoteny
Mart Viikmaa looks at one of the very essential factors in human evolution: neoteny. It is expressed, for example, in extremely slow development and very short pregnancy. The evolution of the Homini from apes to current Homo sapiens is a rather well researched topic. However, the reasons behind the specific ways of development are still vague. Paradoxically, the human development has evolved towards the slower development of an individual. Additionally, juvenile characteristics of humans compared to apes are also signs of neoteny. The theory of neoteny in hominization is still a touchy subject, and a lot of research is on the way.
Kunda Hiiemägi – a field of mounds and a holy place
Tõnno Jonuks and Marge Konsa describe Estonia’s biggest and the most extensive sacred place with a field of mounds dating back from the Old Times.
The Kunda Hiiemägi – Sacred Hill – has held an important place in the minds of the local people. Currently, the ancient burial site is on the verge of destruction due to former mining in the area and the later erosion. The place is extraordinary for the fact that it functioned both as a sacred grove and a burial site.
Two men and the Dipper
Jan Siimson and Sven Za¹ek recall their memories from a trip to catch photos of the Dipper. And several close-ups of the Dipper are included, of course.
Who feeds on aspen trees?
Urmas Kokassaar writes about aspen tree on Man’s table in old times and nowadays. Timber has been used in bread dough during poor times, as well as cambium. In old times and nowadays parts of aspen trees have been and are used as medical treatments.
European rarities in Estonia: Najas flexilis
Helle Mäemets introduces an extremely modest-looking water-plant that is usually overlooked even by botanists. Najas flexilis is also a very rare plant, thought to have disappeared from Estonia until 2003 and 2004 when the species was found from two Estonian lakes.
Rubina Nature Protection Area
Piret Kiristaja takes the reader to a soon-created protected area on the border of Valga and Viljandi counties. The new protected area encompasses diverse natural landscapes with habitats for rich bird fauna.
Interview: Toomas Kukk has interviewed Maia Kivisaar, a geneticist and molecular biologist.
Walk on the northern track of the mysterious Naissaare Island
Birgit Itse continues the introduction of nature trails of the Naissaare Island, finishing in the northern part of the island. This is the military trail, which starts out from the Officers’ Casino, continues on the shore following the military batteries and reaches the lighthouse on the northernmost cape of the island. Before reaching the final point, there will be some more batteries. And then some more.
The manor and park of Hummuli
Heldur Sander, Taimi Paal, Toivo Meikar and Alar Läänelaid are enchanted by the manor and park of Hummuli in South Estonia, a place with interesting history, cultural heritage and nature. The park is considered a typical example of English style in Estonia.
Essay: Silence – a vanishing natural resource by Ann Marvet