Back from the conference in Syktyvkar

In close proximity to Yugra region, Komi republic is located in European part of Russia closer to the Center and probably due to historical reasons, scientific history is longer and institutions (at least in biology) are quite well developing there. There is a center of this research in the Institute of Biology of Komi with many research directions from biodiversity, vegetation science to Geoinformatics and Climatology. The network of Nature protected areas is also well developed and includes about 13% of the region’s total area.

The research interests of the institute increasingly concern high latitudes, e.g. arctic ecosystems and the majority of reports were about this zone. As i had only shortly visited this zone before (mainly near polar circle and not far north), i have become inspired now by special nature and diverse research work there. It was possible to listen to all sections of the conference, so that the reports about vegetation, floras, cryptogamic plants, algae, protists, fish, birds, soils and many other were following one after other, showing different aspects of biology at Far North.

Also two round tables with short reports and vital discussions finished the program of two days: about vegetation classification + mapping and about climate changes. I remember enjoying these disputes as they were informal and of current interest of the gathered audience. And dances and songs finished the program of the third day, very nice:).

I met several mycologists and lichenologists working in Syktyvkar, and hope that our friendship will help study our neighbor regions in more detail in future. Many thanks to the organizers and all other colleagues for very interesting meeting and communication! Hope to visit Syktyvkar soon again!)

Mushroom exhibition in Biological State Museum

The Biological State Museum of K.A. Timiryazev hosts a large exposition dedicated to mycology and fungi, including large collection of neatly made models of mushrooms (

I visited the exhibition today, on the way back from Syktyvkar to Khanty-Mansiysk.

The mushroom models there were made by an artist A.F. Manaev, and there are about 100 species of agarics, bolete, discomycetes, clavarioid, gasteroid fungi, e.g. different systematical groups are well showed. The main exposition showing diversity and ecology (habitats) of larger fungi, but there are also models of poisonous species and their edible similarities. And posters show fungal development and phytopathology.

Aleuria aurantia


Biodiversity of the Far North conference

Komi Republics borders Yugra from the West, the border lies through the mountain range of Northern Ural and two regions have many historical connections and geographical similarities. Going to see many more about the region with my eyes soon, participating in a conference on «Biodiversity of ecosystems of the Far North: inventory, monitoring, conservation». The program includes broad spectrum of presentations discussed in five sections: about vegetation; floras (including fungi) and faunas, conservation and soil science of Northern Regions. Plus three round tables on important issues of vegetation classification, global climate changes and education in Northern Biodiversity science.

More about the conference (and electronic theses) here:

We have recently finished our annual work on historical review of mycological studies in Yugra + publication of Fungal Records Database of Yugra in GBIF and thus, it will be the topic of my presentation. It will include introduction on importance of biodiversity data bases, their standards and present global repositories. The history of research of fungi in Yugra will go then: a mushroom-shaped cloud of words should revive the story :). And our steps of creating a regional database + making it available to the broad community through GBIF will be in conclusion.

The presentation with the report (pdf, in Russian).

The conference’ symbol is the Northern most delicious berry — Cloudberry (Rubus chamaemorus); also tastes nice for fungi as at least 21 species are growing as saprotrophs on its litter. Including very beautiful Rutstroemia chamaemori, Hyaloschypha fuscostipitata and others. Northern biodiversity is really undiscovered and flourishes secretly in our regions :).

A cloud of words that resulted from the analysis of the Titles of mycological publications in Yugra.