State Nature Reserve & laquo; Volga steppe & raquo;
Located in the southwest of the Volga Uplands, within the main watershed between the Volga and the Don.
It was created in the Penza region in 1989.
The reserve consists of 5 separated sites located in the southwest of the Volga Uplands (Penza region).
It consists of natural monuments of the Penza region: Poperechenskaya and Kuncherovskaya steppe and forest steppe Ostrovtsovskaya.
In addition, it includes two forest plots: "Borok" and "Upper Sura".
The reserve is a cluster consists of five widely separated sections, the maximum distance between them - about 230 km.
They are located in six regions of the Penza region: Kuznetsk, Kameshkirskogo, Neverkinskom, Penza, Kamenka and Kolyshleyskom.
The peculiarity of the reserve "Volga steppe", located in the steppe zone, is that its sites are located in two botanical and geographical areas.
Upper Sura Borok and are part of the Eastern European broad-leaved forest province and Poperechenskaya steppe Ostrovtsovskaya and Kuncherovskaya forest - East European steppe.
In a small area of the reserve (about 8500 hectares) remain typical for the area of European forest mixed forests, unique in the soil richness and floristic composition virgin and shrub steppe of northern type.
The largest area of land reserve - Upper Sura.
It was here, in the shadow of protected forests, is gaining momentum main waterway of the Penza region - the river Sura.
This gives the value of water conservation reserve exceptional.
Also of great importance for the conservation of water resources of the Penza region has a portion Borok, located on the banks of the River Kadadah - the left tributary of the Sura.
Powerful black soils Poperechenskoy Ostrovtsovskoy steppes and is a benchmark in this type of soil non-chernozem zone and shall be entered in the Red Book of the Russian soil.
From steppe vegetation in areas dominated steppefied meadow, prairie and shrub steppe, steppe shrubs.
More than 600 plant species have already noted in the plains of the reserve.
It grows 6 species of grasses, of which three kinds of specially protected (feathery, opushennolistny and krasiveshy), as well as grouse Russian and one fungal species listed in the Red Book of Russia.
The most unique Kuncherovskaya steppe, on the southern slopes of sand where there are areas of this southern steppes with a predominance of cereal relic - ovsetsa desert.
But the most beautiful is Ostrovtsovskaya steppe.
She is good at any time of the year: spring, like belorozovym cloud covered it low almond blossoms, cherry steppe and thorns.
And among the grass gold sequins flashing Adonis spring, blooming lovely purple irises and purple gladiolus flowers!
But the most striking outfit from the steppes in summer: silver wave rolls feather in the wind;
High bushes pink hotmy - wild mallow in peremezhku with lilac bells podmorennika yellow flowers, lilac - oregano, purple - larkspur and white - chamomile, create a unique look forb meadows.
This realm of flowers and insects!
The study of the past has only just begun, but it is already known that the reserve is home to such rare species listed in the Red Book of Russia views as a bug - the deer and CALOSOMA SYCOPHANTA, butterfly: Apollo, Podalirius, bear - Madam, copper-butterfly Meleager and at least 5 rare species of bumblebees.
The most western of the sites is located at the source of the river Hopper (a tributary of the Don), the east - at the origin of the Sura River (tributary of the Volga).
The steppe is located at the intersection of two areas - the Penza and Kamensky, away from public roads and at a distance of 4-5 km from the nearest towns.
Entrance to the site is carried out on a dirt road on to.
Along the perimeter of the protected area, along the border also runs a dirt road used for patrol and protection.
Inside steppe areas no other roads are available.
In this area there is no major water bodies.
The site occupies a high plateau interfluvial r. Chopra and r. Archady.
OSTROVTSOVSKAYA forest steppe
The site is located in Kolyshleysky District, far from population centers and busy public roads.
On the territory of the forest and around the perimeter of any dirt roads are not available.
Existing roads in the past are now overgrown and hardly visible.
On the territory of the site occur two streams that merge near its southern border, and then run into the river Hopper.
Ostrovtsovskaya steppe is located on the watershed between the valleys of the rivers and Archada Hopper.
The territory of the reserve from the south and the east is bordered by pretty deep gorge and its many offshoots.
It is called & quot; Skripitsinsky ravine & quot ;.
KUNCHEROVSKAYA forest steppe
The site is located at the junction of the Kuznetsk, and Kameshkirskogo Neverkinsky District, between the villages Verhozim, Red Field and Old Circe.
On all sides it is surrounded by plowed agricultural fields, which in some places stretch out far into its territory. Land transport is available. Along the southwestern border square. 129 an asphalt road to the public. Shatkino - with. Old Circe.
Paved and continues to operate fairly dense network of unpaved country roads, passing along the borders of forest and steppe areas of the reserve.
The abundance of roads, agricultural work in the surrounding nature reserve arable lands make this site available for the local population, which hinders the preservation of wilderness protection regime.
From the west on the border square. 124 flowing stream that originates in the gullies and ravines with exposed springs. The length of it on the territory of the reserve is 0.3 km away. In the northern part of the square. 128 there is a large fen area of 12 hectares, 15% overgrown with birch. Another small reed swamp area of 0.3 hectares is located in the square. 125. Kuncherovskaya steppe is located within the Volga Uplands on the southern spur of Sura Cones and watershed plateau Kadadino-Uzinskogo mezhdurechja River basin. Sura.
Territory area is part of the floodplain and floodplain terraces of the river Kadadah. Low floodplain narrow incline bordered by the riverbed. It left a small river within the oxbows. High floodplain height of about 3 meters occupies a large area of the bottom of the valley. It is separated from the low floodplain high riverbed shaft and full of large deep oxbows.
The relief area many traces of old roads, paved both parallel and perpendicular to the channel Kadadah. Most of the area is occupied by forests. The main forest-forming species is pine. The predominant indigenous pine forests performance.
In the undergrowth - mountain ash, Tatarian maple, viburnum pine, alder buckthorn, common hazel, warty euonymus, honeysuckle wood, alder buckthorn, bird cherry, raspberry, broom Russian.
The floodplain forest presented from black alder and willow.
Plot Borok was able to avoid clear cutting only by the fact that since 1965, before the formation of the reserve forest area had the status of a monument of nature.
From selected in Borok amphibians and reptiles are numerous moor frog and the grass snake; rare - crested newt, common toad and smooth snakes. Among the mammals are common the same species as in the upper reaches of the Sura. Among small mammals - voles and this wood mouse; of waterfowl - muskrat, beaver and mink. Rare meeting marked proteins.
Ungulates (elk, wild boar, roe deer) the territory Bork come regularly, but because of its small area is constantly being kept.
Despite the similarity of the plot from the upper Sura, the bird population is losing its image of the taiga: rare capercaillie, no three-toed woodpecker, Himalayan Cuckoo.
The presence of the river and associated habitats in Borok allows nesting species not encountered in other areas: green bee-eater, the Coast swallow small plovers, common kingfishers, common tern.
From birds of prey nest buzzard, goshawk, hawk, hobby, because owls - Ural owl and long-eared owl. In the swamps and oxbow lakes in some years the marsh harrier nest.
In the first half of the summer is dominated by Chaffinch, ratchet, pied flycatcher, common redstart; background species are tree pipit, browed Warbler, Chiffchaff.
The site is located in the extreme east of the Penza region, in the highest part of the Volga Uplands, known Surskaya Cone, between the source of Sura and its first right tributary - the river an hour, and the entrance to it is carried out on the asphalt roads of local importance - Kuznetsk - Tikhmenev and Kuznetsk - Yavleyka.
The entrance to the protected area are blocked by barriers.
For the area is characterized by a fairly dense network of unpaved forest roads and special purpose carriageway 4-6 m wide glades, making the forests of the reserve available for the scientific research and protection.
A significant part of the road is overgrown and has an unsatisfactory condition.
Meeting them is possible only in the dry season, and in some areas - only transport terrain.
On the road leading to the location in the center portion of the lake Light passes guided tour length 3 km, organized reserve with the obligatory participation of its representatives.
The plot is not rich in water sources.
On its territory there are no large lakes, swamps, rivers wide.
But here, in the shadow of protected forests, is gaining momentum main waterway of the Penza region - the river Sura.
This gives the value of water conservation reserve exceptional.
Sura origins lie to the north, a few kilometers from the border of the reserve, in the Ulyanovsk region. The length of the Suras in the reserve is 10.7 km and its right tributary - the river an hour - 0.3 km.