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The oaks of Europe

1st Forest Olympiad: the results

Last week the Forest Club of Russian nature conservation NGOs and the Moscow regional NGO "The Centre for Environmental Initiatives" have summed up the competition of school researches and artworks of the First Forest Olympiad in Moscow and Moscow region.

The purpose of the Olympiad is to develop a careful attitude to deciduous (broad-leaved) forests, and to involve schoolchildren in studying of forests and reforestation. This work is carried out within the project of ISEU "The Oaks of Europe".

The primeval deciduous forests, in which huge oaks, maples, elms, ashes and lindens grew, bisons and wild boars were lived, and which occupied large areas in the old days, now in fact have disappeared completely. During last decades the rates of degradation of oak forests cause deep anxiety of the foresters and environmentalists. 83 works made by the schoolchildren of Moscow and Moscow region participated in the competition in 5 categories.

In the "nature research" category the 1st place was given to the work of Moscow student, the member of "The Club of Friends of Forests". Its subject is research of changes of forests of Kaluga area, the unique in Russia territory of reserve, where the untouched forestland of deciduous forest is being kept.

In the art works category splendid pictures, verses and photos were introduced. After long discussion the jury gave 1st places to the picture "The Oak in Autumn" made by the schoolgirl from Zaraysk (Moscow region), to the poem "The Green Oak" of the student of Dmitrov grammar school (Moscow region), to the series of photos "There is the Hope!" made by the girl from Maleevka village (Klin district of Moscow region). In the category "Green Wall" the works on planting of trees were examined. The joint work of the schoolchildren from Ostafyevo settlement (Podolsk district of Moscow region) and from Moscow school N 1946 won the 1st place. The subject of the research is the history of trees that grow on the territory of the "Russian Parnassus" manor. Two mighty oaks - giants (diameter 1,4 and 2,5 meters) were found out being the offsprings of the oaks, planted on the George Washington's grave. The winners were awarded with the books (the Red Books of Moscow and Moscow region, plants qualifiers), films, calendars, subscription to the magazines "In the World of Plants", "The Young Naturalist", "Svirel" ("The Reed-pipe") and with other prizes granted by organizations and firms, which had supported the Olympiad.

"It is wonderful that so many children take a keen interest in forests, and look after the trees with enthusiasm. Now more and more people are participate in planting of trees and reforestation" - said Ekaterina Shishkina, the member of the jury, the head of the project "We Shall Revive Our Forest".

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