Ministry of natural resources of the Russian federation

       Polistovsky National Nature Reserve

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February 12 - Nature calendar: winter continues

Nature calendar: winter continues

Полистовский заповедник, фото: Татьяна Новикова

Winter is gradually coming to the end, and Polistovsky nature reminds of this by a protracted thaw. The snow becomes denser, thawed patches appear here and there, roads become icy, icicles “grow out” and then melt under roofs.

January this year is a month of contrasts: there were sharp temperature and atmospheric pressure drops, and frequent snowfalls. The maximum air temperature this month was +1.6°C, the minimum -22.9°C, and these values on thermometers could be observed at the interval of only 5 days, on the 25th and the 30th of January.

Полистовский заповедник, фото: Оскар Сайфуллин

In February, the cold retreated, almost daily the air temperature rose above 0 degrees Celsius, and from the 3rd to the 5th of February it even rained. Only once, on the 7th of February, the air temperature dropped below -5°С. If this weather continues, it will soon be possible to talk about the onset of the meteorological spring.

According to the Orthodox Calendar, today, on the 12th of February, the Day of the Three Saints' is celebrated. According to our ancestors observations, on this day the sledge path begins to worsen, and thawed patches appear on slopes. According to the weather on the 12th of February, the weather for the rest of winter was determined: “Warm days around the Three Saints - wait for frosts in February”.

Полистовский заповедник, кадр с фотоловушки

Another name on the 12thy of February is "animal weddings", or "animal celebrations". It was believed that on this day, animals celebrate their weddings in forests, battles between the males take place and the animal race begins. Indeed, the middle of February is the mating season for some inhabitants of Polistovsky Reserve: wolves, foxes, beavers, raccoon dogs; sometimes this period is accompanied by fights between predators.

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