The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



(1) Various species of dwarf birch, including Betula humilis, Betula exilis, and the ground birch, from 0.2 to 1–2 m tall.

(2) An association of plants in which dwarf birches predominate. The first (upper) stratum of the association is dominated by one of the dwarf birch species, often with the admixture of shrub willows; ericaceous shrubs predominate in the second stratum. Depending upon ecological conditions, the soil cover is mainly lichens, green moss, or sphagnum moss. Erniks are distributed throughout the southern tundra, where ernik tundras are formed, and in pretundra sparse forests. In the USSR ernik tundras extend from the Kola Peninsula to the Lena River in a band as much as 200–250 km wide. East of the Lena River erniks are interspersed with pretundra sparse forests and hummocky tundras. Along swamps the erniks penetrate into the forest zone. In the European part of the USSR and in Western Siberia, the ernik is dominated by the dwarf arctic birch (B. nana), which is replaced by B. exilis east of the Enisei River. The erniks of the Far East have B. ovalifolia and Altai birch (B. fruticosa), among other species; the ground birch (B. rotundifolia) grows in the subalpine and alpine belts of the Altai and Saian mountains. In the tundra the ernik serves as pasture for reindeer and is a major source of fuel.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
The Financial Police is checking cash given directly from cash department of Alfa Telecom, said Financial Police investigator Ernik uulu Aibek at the meeting of the commission on nationalized assets on Wednesday in Parliament.He said counterparties are mainly abroad.
Plymouth Erickson Partners LLC Farmington-Hills Ernestos Plymouth Ernie's Kings Mill Restaurant Clinton Township Ernik Inc.
Many breeding groups (58.1% of the total observed) were seen during aerial surveys in the Ernik tundra at the forest border or near it.