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July 31, 2015 01:27


Bubonitsy could be called an extinct village: already in 1985 there were only two permanent residents among all twenty-two houses – an old man and an old woman, a brother and a sister.

There were no jobs in the vicinity, the distance to the nearest town of Toropets made up 40 km through impassable roads. This absolute wilderness with free houses for accommodation was necessary to the biologists Pazhetnovs who were engaged in the study of bears in their natural habitatt and the rehabilitation of orphaned bear cubs. Valentin and Svetlana Pazhetnovs were looking for a quiet place and found it in Bubonitsy.

A deserted village turned into a base of the biological station “Clean Forest”. Now a wooden plaque with painted figures of bears, the name and the date of the village foundation – 1540 – is installed at the entrance to Bubonitsy.

The history of this “neck of the woods” is even longer – the village was built in XVI century on the developed place, on the trade route “From the Vikings to the Greeks”. There are many archaeological monuments in the neighborhood: ancient settlements, burial mounds; and the Biological Station organizes tours of them.

Long time ago the name of the village was written as “Bobonichi”, and the current name does not even have a single pronunciation - the stress in the word is put in different ways. Since the permanent residents of the village are now presented by the employees of the biological station, let us take their version of stress as normal one: on the second syllable, Bu’bonitsy. In Russian language the sound of the word resembles that of a bell, according to Valentin Sergeevich Pazhetnov.

Modern Bubonitsy can be considered a family village, because three generations of Pazhetnovs live and work here, all of them being qualified biologists. For example, the son-in-law of Pazhetnovs, Vladimir Bologov studies the behavior of wolves; his home is the first one in the village. Only one person in Bubonitsy has norelation to the biological station - a relative of those very last natives of the village.

Three major tour routes are developed. Firstly, the “Ecotrail” - two kilometers of way through the woods, past the high bog with a very beautiful lake in the centre. You can see all samples of typical nature and plants of Central Russia in two hours. The “Zoological” route is an excursion to a beaver colony. Along the way you will be told about the life and habits of beavers, shown their huts. The hosts of these huts are also likely to show themselves. The “Historical and Archaeological” route is an excursion to numerous archaeological monuments (from III to XII century) which are in the vicinity of Bubonitsy. Settlements, mounds, hills - these places were located at the ancient trade route “From the Vikings to the Greeks”.

In addition, an ecological school “Bear Cubs” is working at the centre for the rescue of orphaned bear cubs – it is something like a summer camp with an ecological focus: study of local nature mixed with open-air recreation. Children live in tents and study the world with the help of the scientists of the biological station. All costs are paid by IFAW.


Author: Anna Dorozhkina

Tags: Bubonitsy     

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