Chukotka Autonomous Region

Chukotka
Autonomous Region

Chukotka Autonomous region occupies the entire Chukotka Peninsula, a part of the mainland, and a number of islands. The biggest share of the region territory is located in the Arctic circle.The mining industry is the basis of Chukotka's economy. The main field of agriculture in the region is reindeer breeding. The herd of deer in Chukotka is one of the largest in the world.

The administrative center is the city of Anadyr

Area 164 673 km².

Population 1 913 037 people (2018).

Population density 11,62 people per km² (2018)

Web site: www..

Republic of Sakha (Yakutia) Chukotka Autonomous Region Magadan Region Kamchatka Krai Sakhalin Region Khabarovsk Krai Amur Region Primorsky Krai Jewish Autonomous Region Republic of Buryatia Zabaykalsky KraiRussian Far East

History

The indigenous people of Chukotka are the Chukchi. The Russians discovered Chukotka in 1648, during the expedition of Semen Dezhnev. Anadyr Ostrog was the first Russian settlement founded in 1649. In 1803, Chukotka became part of Kamchatka region of Irkutsk province. In 1922 Anadyr and Chukotka counties entered Kamchatka province. Chukotka Autonomous District with its capital in Anadyr settlement was formed in 1930. In 1934 Chukotka district was included in Kamchatka region and in 1951 it was allocated to direct subordination to Khabarovsk Krai. Since 1953 it was part of Magadan region.

Intensive construction of military airfields and airbases began in Chukotka in the med 50s, as the geographical location of the peninsula provided the least flying time to Alaska and the northwestern part of the United States.

In 1980, Chukotka national district became autonomous. Chukotka autonomous district left Magadan region in 1992 and received the status of the federal subject of the Russian Federation.

Geographical location

Chukotka Autonomous District is located in the extreme north-east of Russia. It occupies the entire Chukotka Peninsula, a part of the mainland and a number of islands (Wrangel, Gerald, Ayon, Ratmanova, etc.). It is washed by the East Siberian and Chukchi Sea of the Arctic Ocean and the Bering Sea of the Pacific Ocean.

The following extreme points of Russia are located in the territory of the district: the eastern-most point - Ratmanova Island, the eastern-most continental point - Dezhneva Cape. Here you can find: the northern-most city of Russia - Pevek and the eastern-most city -- Anadyr, as well as the eastern-most permanent settlement - Uelen.

Time zone

The district is located in Kamchatka time zone. UTC makes +12:00 (UTC +12). The difference with Moscow time makes 9 hours.

Physical and geographical characteristics

Chukotka is dominated by the mountain relief; small lowland areas can be found only on the coast and along the river valleys. Anadyrskaya is the largest lowland of the region.

The mountain landscape in the central part is formed by the medium-high Anadyr plateau and Anyu highlands. The mountain ranges with height over 1 km and Chukotka highlands in the east rise over them.

Natural resources

Despite low state of geological exploration of Chukotka, its explored mineral resource potential is considered to be one of the highest in the Far East. Subsoil of this region is rich in deposits of gold, tin, silver, copper, tungsten, mercury, platinum group metals, coal, oil, gas, and other minerals.

The territory of Chukotka is rich in water resources. There are more than 8,000 rivers with the length of more than 10 km. Most of rivers flow in the mountains. Main rivers:Anadyr, Omolon, Velikaya, Amguema,Bolshoi Anyui and MalyAnyui.

Chukotka has diverse bioresources. The seas washing the Chukotka peninsula are populated by numerous herring whales, bagwhales, killer whales, white whales, and other cetacean mammals; walruses, bearded seals, seals, ribbon seals, and other pinnipeds.

Reindeer husbandry is the basis of agriculture in the district. Nutritive base of the region allows to achieve the livestock population of up to 600-650 thousand deer. The output livestock population of deer was doubled and reached 220-250 thousand deer in 2005.

Climate

Climate of Chukotka is severe, subarctic, marine on the coasts, and continental - on the mainland. Winter duration makes up to 10 months. Mean January temperatures range from −15C to −39C; mean July temperatures range from +5C to +10C. There is a set of climate records registered in Chukotka: minimum number of sunshine hours, maximum average annual wind speed and frequency of hurricanes and storms in Russia. Growing period in the southern part of the region makes 80 100 days. Permafrost is widespread.

Flora and fauna

Despite the severe climate, the flora of Chukotka Autonomous District is quite diverse. The main species of the plant world of Chukotka grow in mountain and arctic tundra areas that are suitable for growing of small shrubs, herbs, mosses, and lichens. Light-coniferous forests are formed by Daurian larch and dwarf birch.

The animal world of Chukotka refers to Arctic type. These lands are inhabited by reindeers, Alaskan ground squirrels, northern mouse hares. North American brown lemming and arctic lemming and rock ptarmigans can be also found in the territories of Chukotka Autonomous District.

Snow sheep and unique musk-ox live in the mountains. These lands are populated by numerous wolves and polar foxes, gluttons and sables, lynx and ermines. The other mammal species include chipmunk, mountain hare, fox, musk beaver, and mink.

Chukotka conditions and climate are favorable for marine mammals - walruses, floe rats, sea dogs, sea hares.

Special attention should be paid to the underwater world of Chukotka. The local waters are inhabited by blackfishes, oceanic herring, pollock, Pacific salmon, cod, navaga, smelt, and flounder. Commercial fishery species include salmon, loach, whitefish, grayling, pike, broad whitefish, and burbot.

Other sea species of Chukotka include crabs and shrimps, as well as cephalopods.

Population

The urban population makes 70.51% of the total population of the district. National composition: Russians 49.61%, Chukchi 25.28%, Ukrainians 5.68%, Eskimos 3.03%, Evens 2.76%, Chuvans 1.78%, Belarusians 0.72%, Tatars 0.89%.

Administrative and territorial division

Chukotka Autonomous District includes 1 city of district importance Anadyr and 6 districts.


Economy

The district economy is based on mining industry. About 10% of gold in Russia is mined in Chukotka. The other industries are poorly developed in the region (small fish processing plants, enterprises for production of building materials) and serve to cover the local needs.

Reindeer breeding is the main field of agriculture in the region. Chukotka herd of deer is one of the largest in the world. In addition to meat and fells, the deer are used for production of valuable medicinal raw materials - deer young antlers.

Specific feature of Chukotka is extremely low level of transport supply, which is caused by both very low population density and severe climatic conditions (winter up to 10 months). This makes construction of roads very expensive and labor-intensive.

Sea and air transport are the main modes of transport for long-distance trips. Each city has its own airport. Sea traffic is also very difficult during the periods of freeze-up or ice drift.


There are 5 federal seaports of the Northern Sea Route: Anadyr (the largest in Chukotka), Pevek - (the northern-most Russian port), Provideniya, Bering, Egvekinot.

Education

In Chukotka Autonomous District, there are two branches of higher educational institutions - the branch of St. Petersburg State University of Economics in Anadyr and Chukotka branch of Northeastern Federal University.

Culture

There is a museum center Heritage of Chukotka, established in 2002 at the district museum of local history in Chukotka. For the purpose of preservation of the culture of local peoples, the State Chukchi-Eskimo Song and Dance Ensemble have been established.

Religion

There are Anadyr and Chukotka eparchies of the Russian Orthodox Church in the territory of the region.