Aarnivalkea–Kivisuo expands again

The largest of the areas protected by the Finnish Natural Heritage Foundation expands again as another 42 hectares of the central parts of the Kivisuo mire in Kuusamo were purchased in December.

More than half of the extension area consists of open mires. The largest of Kivisuo’s shallow open water pools belong to this part, which makes the acquisition even more valuable. Although we don’t for sure until next summer, it is likely that these pools host the largest diversity of waders, gulls and duck in the Kivisuo mire complex.

The acquisition was made possible when a private landowner contacted the foundation after having seen an article of the previous expansion of the Aarnivalkea nature reserve in a local newspaper Koillissanomat. This can be considered a lucky strike since the foundation had plans to contact this landowner in particular as our next move in protecting the Kivisuo area.

The forests belonging to newly purchased area are 70 to 95 years old on average. One of the heathlands at the northern border of the property has been cut in the 1960s, but otherwise the traces of forestry operations begin to disappear from the landscape.

The expansion increases the total area of Aarnivalkea–Kivisuo to a handsome 160 hectares.

PHOTO: Ari-Pekka Auvinen

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