Wilderness Audit in Gorgany Nature Reserve, Ukraine

In the past weeks the European Wilderness Auditors spent several days in Gorgany Wilderness, embeded in the Gorgany Mountains Massif. The area is located in the eastern part of the Carpathian Mountains in Ukraine.

Gorgany Wilderness became a member of European Wilderness Network already in 2016. The Wilderness certificate was issued that year that is valid for four years. Since then, the European Wilderness Society and Gorgany Nature Reserve searched for the financial support to start the Wilderness Full-Audit process. 

High quality Wilderness

Successfully securing funding in the spring 2019 allowed the European Wilderness Society Auditors to visit this area and implement the first part of the Field Audit. The field work took place in the western part of the Wilderness with an objective to Audit the Wilderness quality and potential for enlargement.

The European Wilderenss Society Auditors focused specifically on Wilderness borders issues and designation of the buffer zone. Additionally, they addressed the scale and impact of forestry around Wilderness, as well as research and monitoring in Wilderness. The field work provided a wide spectrum of knowledge and also confirmed the high quality of Wilderness.  

Gorgany – Local biodiversity hotspot

The stormy weather and the difficult terrain limited the Auditors to cover the whole Wilderness. The very remote eastern part of Gorgany was not audited due to limited time available. During the closing meeting the Director of Gorgany Nature, Mr. Yaroslav Petrashchuk, confirmed commitment to implement Wilderness Full-Audit in Autumn 2019.

Gorgany Wilderness consists of large areas with contiguous old-growth broadleaf and conifer forests. Therefore, it is an area of great international importance and a local hotspot for biodiversity depending on spontaneous natural processes and ecosystem dynamics.

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