Kamchatka Krai

Kamchatka
Krai

Kamchatka Krai is located in the territory of the Kamchatka Peninsula. It is washed by the Pacific Ocean, the Bering Sea, and the Sea of Okhotsk. Glaciers, volcanoes, mineral springs, Valley of Geysers attract many tourists to Kamchatka. Agriculture of the region is notable for developed fur farming and reindeer breeding. The share of arable land makes 0.1% of the total region area.

The administrative center is the city of Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky

Area 472 300 km².

Population 315 600 people (2018).

Population density 0,7 people per km² (2018)

Web site: www.kamgov.ru

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

Since the Stone Age, Kamchatka has been inhabited by Koryaks and Itelmens. In the 17th century, the development of the Russian Siberia and the Far East began. Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky is one of the oldest cities in the Russian Far East. In 1849, Kamchatka region was formed. Later it was renamed province which structure included the newly formed Anadyr county. In 1934, it received the status of a region and was supplemented with Chukotka and Koryak national districts. The region is called Kamchatka Krai since 2007; its structure includes the administrative and territorial unit with a special status Koryak District.

Geographical location

Kamchatka Krai lies in the territory of Kamchatka Peninsula, the adjacent part of the mainland, Karaginsky and Komandorskiye Islands. From the east it is washed by the Bering Sea (the coast length of more than 2000 km), from the west - by the Sea of Okhotsk (the coast length makes about 2000 km).

Up to 14,100 rivers and streams flow across the territory of Kamchatka Krai. Main rivers: Kamchatka, Penzhina, Kuyul, Vyvenka, Pakhacha, Apuka, Ukelayat. Lakes: Talovskoye, Palanskoye.

Time zone

Kamchatka Krai is located in the 12th time zone called Kamchatka Time. The UTC offset makes +12:00. The difference with Moscow, the capital of the Russian Federation, makes 9 hours.

Physical and geographical characteristics

Combination of specific physical and geographical and climatic conditions led to the formation of especially dangerous hydrological phenomena and processes in Kamchatka. These include: snow avalanches and mud flows, catastrophic rises of rivers level following significant rainfall floods and ice-jam phenomena, riverbed deformations.

Kamchatka is located in volcanic activity zone; there are about 300 large and medium-sized volcanoes, 29 of which are active. The largest volcano in Eurasia is Klyuchevskaya Sopka (with height of 4750 m). Volcano activity caused formation of many mineral resources and hydrogeothermal activity: formation of fumaroles, geysers, and hot springs.

Natural resources

Almost all rivers in the territory of Kamchatka Krai are of commercial fishing importance and provide spawning fund of Pacific salmon and other fish species.

Fauna of Kamchatka Krai is diverse and includes 45 species of land mammals and about 224 species of birds. The most valuable and commercially important species are brown bear, elk, snow sheep, sable.

The main forest species of Kamchatka Krai include stone birch, white birch, dwarf pine, alder pine, Kurile Dahurian (Kamchatka) larch, Ajan spruce.

The forest resources occupy 95.3% of the total land area of Kamchatka Krai.

Climate

The climate of Kamchatka is oceanic, relatively mild, with a high rate of precipitation - up to 1000 mm per year (the snow cover height reaches 2.5-3.0 m), excessive humidity (frequent fogs that prevail on the coasts), and a long frost-free period - up to 140 days.

In terms of climate, the most suitable area is the valley of Kamchatka River which features the climate of coniferous forest zone and is similar to the continental regions of Siberia. The frost-free period lasts here from the end of April till the end of October, and the period with temperatures above +10C makes 92 days.

Flora and fauna

Typical features of the vegetation in Kamchatka include prevalence of zonal vegetation groups and the wide spread of intrazonal flora (floodplain forests, swamps, tundra). The biggest part of the peninsula lies in the moderate climate zone and is notable for predominance of forest landscapes.

Flora of the peninsula includes 1166 species and subspecies of vascular plants relating to 410 genera and 89 families.

The list of fauna of salt-water and fresh-water fish-like vertebrates and fishes, amphibians, reptiles, birds, land and marine mammals of Kamchatka Krai and adjacent marine areas includes 918 species and subspecies. The Bering Sea and the Sea of Okhotsk are richest seas in the world in terms of species diversity. The fish fauna of the Sea of Okhotsk includes more than 350 species. The fauna of the Bering Sea is formed by more than 450 species of fish, crustaceans, and shellfishes, more than 200 species of birds and 26 species of marine mammals.

The fauna of marine mammals includes 7 species of seals, sea otter (kalan), walrus, and more than 20 species of large and small cetaceans.

Structure of the land fauna of the peninsula is impoverished compared to the same latitude in mainland of the North-East Asia and features lack of variety of species in biocoenoses. There are 37 land mammals, 3 of which were acclimatized (American mink, muskrat, Canadian beaver) and 1 was brought from the mainland to the internal areas of the peninsula Kolyma elk. Predators and rodents are of the key importance for the hunting sector in land ecosystems. Predators are object of commercial hunting, while rodents are most numerous animals of the region.

Ornis of the region includes 322 species and subspecies of birds, 60% of which refer to wetland and sea colonial birds.

Soil

The soil cover of Kamchatka refers to the meadow-forest zone of the forest coarse-humus soils of the Far Eastern taiga and meadow-forest region. This zone is formed by volcanic ocherous, volcanic alluvial, peat soils, and raw soils.

Soils of Kamchatka were formed in conditions of cold and excessive humidity; their main components are acid and subacid rocks of volcanic origin. They feature layered profile, light mechanical composition, loose structure, lack of nutrients, weak microbiological processes, lack of invertebrates. Swamping and the island permafrost constrain the biological activity of soils.



Population

The urban population proportion makes 78.2%; the rural population accounts for 21.8%. Most of the population lives in the cities of Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Yelizovo, Vilyuchinsk and valleys of Avacha and Kamchatka Rivers.

The region's national structure is as follows: Russians - 78%, Ukrainians - 3.6%, Koryaks - 2.1%, Itelmens - 0.7%, Tatars - 0.7%, other nationalities - less than 1%. Belarusians 0.6%, Evens 0.6%, Kamchadals 0.5%, Chukchi 0.5%, other nationalities 12%.

Administrative and territorial division

Kamchatka Krai includes 3 cities of regional subordination (Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Vilyuchinsk, Yelizovo) and 11 districts, 4 of which (Karaginsky, Olyutorsky, Penzhinsky, Tigilsky) form Koryak district as the administrative and territorial unit with special status.



Economy

The industry has the leading position in the economy of Kamchatka Krai. The region produces precious and non-ferrous metals, natural gas, coal, mineral and thermal power waters, fresh groundwaters, common natural resources.

The fisheries industry of Kamchatka Krai has one of the leading positions in the fisheries of the Far East and Russia as a whole (its share in the total fish yield of the Far Eastern Basin more than 34%, of Russia more than 22.0%).

Glaciers and volcanoes, mineral and thermal springs, the legendary Valley of Geysers and the virgin fauna and flora, untouched by civilization, created perfect conditions for development of eco-tourism, hiking, and equestrian tourism on Kamchatka. The Russian and foreign travelers are attracted to Kamchatka by purest and rapid rivers, active volcanoes, mountain peaks with the height exceeding 4 000 m, and the coastal waters with rich and diverse ichthyofauna.



Education

There are 140 kindergartens and 120 schools in the region. Additional education services are provided by 68 state and municipal organizations.

The region has a well-developed a system of secondary vocational education, consisting of 11 educational establishments offering mastering of 53 professions.

In Kamchatka Krai, there are 5 universities with more than 13 master's degree programs.

Culture

There are 243 cultural and artistic institutions in Kamchatka Krai including drama and comedy theatre, puppet theatre, philharmonic hall, city orchestra and folk ensembles, as well as libraries, clubs, and museums.

The greatest number of cultural heritage sites is concentrated in the territory of the city of Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky. Its center is adorned with the monuments to outstanding navigators and the monuments related to the heroic Petropavlovsk defense of August 1854.

Religion

There are 62 religious organizations of 8 confessions registered in Kamchatka Krai:

  • Petropavlovsk and Kamchatka Eparchy of the Russian Orthodox Church;
  • Central Religious Organization of the Christians of the Full Gospel, Association of Kamchatka Churches Annunciation;
  • Christians of the Evangelical Confession (the Pentecostals);
  • Church of Evangelical Christians-Baptists;
  • Religious Association of Muslims of Kamchatka Krai;
  • Roman Catholic St. Theresa of Christ child-teacher of the Church Parish;
  • Church of the Seventh-Day Adventists;
  • Community of Bahai faith followers.

There are 52 places of worship and Sunday schools.