Belovezhskaya Pushcha is the oldest forest in Europe. The lands of the protected area extend on the territory of the Brest and Grodno regions, as well as part of the Pushcha is on the territory of Poland.
The first references to Pushchan forests are reflected in the “History” of Herodotus – the 5th century BC, as well as in the works of Pliny the Elder and Tacit I – the 2nd century AD. As an ancient intact forest massif has been mentioned in the Ipatieva record since 983.
For many centuries, the forests of the reserve have been a favorite hunting place for royal families. The first stone castle was built in the central part of the Pushcha by the Lithuanian Prince Troyden, conquering local tribes of hunters and fishermen.
During Soviet rule, since 1957 Pushcha has become an elitist hunting farm of state importance. The government residence of Viskuli was built. In December 1991, it hosted a landmark meeting of the leadership of the USSR, during which the largest country in the world ceased to exist and the Commonwealth of Independent States was formed. For a long time it was a closed place, now it can be visited by anyone.
In 1991, the protected area was granted the status of a national park, and in 1993, by a decision of UNESCO, it was included in the list of unique biosphere reserves of the world.
Belovezhskaya Pushcha has almost 1500 species of flora and 8.3 thousand members of fauna. It is a huge forest area with an occupied area of 8 thousand hectares.
The main goal of the national park is to study and develop methods of conservation of species diversity. On the territory of Pushcha there is a museum of nature.
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