Far East Marine Biosphere Reserve is located in the western part of the Sea of Japan. It occupies about 10% of the area of the Peter the Great Gulf – the most southern and warm waters of the Far Eastern seas of Russia.
Nature. The nature of the Marine Reserve is a unique combination of boreal-arctic and sub-tropical fauna – the richest diversity of the the seas of Russia. The main objects of protection of the Far Eastern Marine Reserve are Far Eastern Sea cucumber, Kamchatka crab, Giant octopus, Spotted seal, Coastal scallop and seabird colonies. Minke whales, killer whales or Orcas and dolphins often come to the waters of the reserve.
The reserve protects 40% of plant species known to Primorsky Krai. There are 925 species of vascular plants, 62 of which belong to the category of specially protected. Matteuccia orientalis, Teucrium, Limonium tetragonum are of exceptional scientific and conservation value. The population of these species is protected only in the Far Eastern Marine Biosphere Reserve.
Black-faced spoonbill and Chinese egret are among the representatives of the rarest birds in the world. 28 species of birds are included in the Red Book of IUCN and Russia, for example Rhinoceros auklet, Peregrine falcon, Storm petrel, Streaked shearwater. Complete list of birds of the marine reserve includes 370 species, 223 species of which are breeding, colonial and migratory, and can be observed directly in the reserve.
The reserve is inhabited by minke whales, killer whales and dolphins. Exotic inhabitants include tropical fish: tuna, swordfish, poisonous fish-dog (fugue), sargassum fish, tiger shark. In total there are 44 species of animals listed in the Red Book of Russia. Coastal protection zone of the reserve and the nearby national park “Land of the Leopard” is home to Amur wild cat, Siberian tiger, Amur leopard, Black vulture, White-tailed eagle and Steller’s sea eagle. There are more than 2130 species of animals and plants in the reserve – it is the richest in species diversity sea area of Russia. It is home to both subtropical and arctic species, including 170 species of fish, 300 species of crustaceans, 30 species of echinoderms and more than 200 species of mollusks, 7 of which are included in the Red Book of Russia.
Furugelm Island is home to the world’s largest colony of black-tailed gulls and japanese cormorants. It is also the only nesting place of Black-Faced spoonbills and Chinese Egrets in Russia. Located only 20 kilometers away from the border with North Korea and China, it is the southernmost island in Russia.
Popova island is a popular recreational place, and is easily accessible from Vladivostok city. This is why the educational centre of the reserve and the botanical garden is located here.
Vityaz settlement and the Gamow cape is a wonderful coastal area with beautiful islands, white sand and pebble beaches and unique biodiversity.
The three border crossing: a place where China, North Korea and Russia unite. It’s a unique place in terms of culture, politics and biodiversity. Tumen river separates the countries, and you can see the North Korea with the naked eye.
Things to do
Excursions and tours to the Marine reserve can be organized with our help.
- Join guided tours in the reserve
- Take pictures of the flora and fauna
- Go birdwatching
- Visit the Center of Environmental Education, the museum of the reserve and a botanical garden on Popov Island
- Enjoy hiking in the beautiful nature of Primorye
- Join horseriding tours with scenic views
- Go diving or snorkeling in the unique underwater world
- Take a boat tour from Vladivostok or from the Vityaz settlement
The most popular route is the “Vityaz seaside tour”. It includes many of the main attractions of the Marine reserve. You can also join boat tours, bypassing the islands of Rimsky-Korsakov and the most beautiful places on the coast from the Cape L’va to Cape Gamow). Besides, we can offer a trip to the border of North Korea.
Khasan district, Peter the Great Bay
The distance from Vladivostok by highway, 250 km
The composition of the reserve consists of 11 islands, the total area of which is 1100 hectares. Founded on March 24, 1978 in order to preserve the natural environment of the richest flora and fauna of the Peter the Great Gulf, and, above all, the genetic diversity of marine organisms.
Departmental affiliation: Russian Academy of Sciences.
The reserve area is 64 316.3 hectares, including 63,000 hectares of marine area.
The number of species of animals and plants living in the reserve exceeds 5000.
The climate of the reserve is a monsoonal climate with strong winds, uneven distribution of rainfall, cyclones and mist. The contact zone of interaction between the world’s biggest continent and Pacific ocean affects the climate. In the winter north-westerly and northerly winds are blowing from the continent to the sea, bringing cold and dry air. The winter brings little snow, the average air temperature in January -11 C. Summer is warm with frequent rains, storms and fog. The average temperature in August +21 C. In winter, the water temperature of the reserve is similar to the Arctic (-1,8 ° C), and in the summer – with subtropical (up to +26 ° C).
Key research areas: study and mapping of benthic biodiversity and terrestrial communities; monitoring and evaluation of the impact of anthropogenic and natural factors on the biota of the reserve; studying the biology of rare and endangered species.
Organization of protection and environmental education is one of the important aspects. The reserve had participated in international projects under the auspices of IUCN, WWF, NOOA.
it has been a member of the Association of East Asian Biosphere Reserve since 2003 and a participant of the UNDP-GEF “Strengthening the Marine and Coastal Protected Areas of Russia.”