GB No. 5-6, summer-fall 1991
Very few inhabitants of Cracow are aware of the existence of five nature sanctuaries within the boundaries of our city. Lack of both appropriate literature and good signs attracting the passers-by's attention do not help to shatter their ignorance. Already at the time when they were created (between 1953 - 1961) Cracow's sanctuaries faced serious dangers - it took a couple of years to compile an necessary biological documentation. Throughout years irreversible damage there was caused by:
Devastation is increased by very low cultivation of our society, insensitivity towards beauty and no care for the environment, and most of all by complete irresponsibility of state institutions in charge of those places.
I below present a short characteristic of our nature sanctuaries (as they are in March 1990):
Bielańskie Skały - 1,73 ha, close floristic preservation; created: 28.12.1957, protects communities of stenothermal plants on limestone ground surrounded by oak forest mixed with pine, hornbeam and elm.
In Ks. Józefa Street there is a place "Rezerwat Przyrody" (Nature Sanctuary) facing a refuse dump. From the direction of Las Wolski there are two fallen metal plates and two smaller wooden ones fixed with nails to the trees. Responsible institution: Miejski Park i Ogród Zoologiczny (City Park and Zoological Garden).
Panieńskie Skały - 6,41 ha, partial landscape preservation, created 25.8.1953, protects the only piece of natural forest in Cracow: 140 years' old beech - trees mixed with oak, pine, hornbeam, ash and birch. Contains rich undergrowth, among others: anemone, lily of valley, ivy. Very diversified ground - loess ravines, gullies, rocks. There is only one plate inside the preservation. No signs at the side of Wola Justowska wherefrom inhabitants come for walks most often. Institutions in charge: Miejski Park i Ogród Zoologiczny.
Przegorzalskie Skały - 1,38 ha, created 19.9.1959, close floristic preservation; protects communities of plants: in the middle - xenothermal grass, in the western part - lichenaceous plants, in the eastern part - mixed forest dominated by oak and stenothermal bushes (blackhorn, barberry, brian-rose). There is only one information plate. Area is devastated and completely littered by workers during some construction work there. Responsible: Jagiellonian University.
Skołczanka - 36,77 ha, created 28.12.1957; steppe reservation, protects station of about 500 species of butterflies and hymenoptera. Comprises limestone hill overgrown with forest, grass and stenothermal plants as well as sandy desert on its eastern slope. Marked wrongly by Nadleśnictwo Myślenickie ("Sołczanka" instead of "Skołczanka", once even "Cieszynianka"). The plates are placed along the borders of the reserve but they are of very bad quality and so get damaged soon.
Bonarka - 2,29 ha, created 29.9.1961, protects the area of an old stone-pit abounding with geologic and tectonic phenomena and formations dating from Jurassic, Cretauous, and Tertiary periods characteristic for geological structure of Cracow.
Lack of information plates. Boundaries littered. All area covered with vegetation hindering any observation of the above - mentioned phenomena. In charge: Urząd Dzielnicy Kraków - Podgórze (local authorities).
In order to mend the damage done to out nature, appropriate organs of state administration should immediately mark the areas of the sanctuaries with signs, remove all litter and rubbish and have all care work done. As far as the society of Cracow is concerned, they should respect those areas and endeavor to keep them in maximally good condition for the future generations.
Guard of Nature Protection
translation: Agnieszka Lis