located in the Mologa-Sheksna lowlands and the waters of the Rybinsk Reservoir. Area, 112.600 hectares. The Darwin Preserve was created in 1945 for the purpose of preserving the natural complexes of the southern taiga of the European USSR and studying the changes in these complexes in connection with the creation of the reservoir (1941–47). The plant cover consists principally of pine forests. Also common are birch and spruce forests and more rarely European alder thickets. Swampy forests and forests with moss (Hylocomium, Dicranum, and Rhylidiadelphus) and whortleberries prevail. There are many sphagnum marshes.
The Darwin Preserve is inhabited by the brown bear, otter, badger, marten, ermine, squirrel, blue hare, elk, capercaillie, ptarmigan, hazel hen, and willow grouse. There are many swimming and marsh birds at the reservoir, especially during migration. In the reservoir there are bream, pike, pike perch. Abramis ballerus, ide, roach, perch, Pelecus cultratus. Aspius aspius, and burbot. The lakes have tench and carp. In the preserve experiments are being conducted on raising gal-liform birds in open-air cages, increasing the numbers of swimming birds, and restoring oak groves destroyed when the reservoir was filled.
REFERENCESDarvinskii zapovednik. Vologda. 1957.
Zapovedniki Sovelskogo Soiuza. Moscow. 1969. [Collection of articles.]
L. K. SHAPOSHNIKOV