The National Park Slitere in Latvia (12/12)

In Kurzéme in the west of Latvia, the thaw has set in. But this is not why the trees in the coastal forest along the Baltic Sea have wet feet: beavers are putting them under water. Nature's lumberjacks are felling trees to get to the bark. While the herbivores are still finding it difficult to find greenery, the white storks are feasting on the numerous frogs spawning in the dammed waters. Now and again, sharp-eyed visitors will glimpse an elk in the deciduous forests on the wind-protected slopes of this steep coastline. The lynx, too, which had become quite rare, is doing well in this nature reserve on Cape Kolka, some 150 km west of the capital, Riga. As recently as 80 years ago only a handful had survived in Latvia and only in the region of what is now the Slitere National Park.
 
In addition to an extraordinary wealth of rare flora and fauna, the Slitere National Park in the west of Latvia offers a diverse and fascinating landscape. The protected zone does not stop at the coast but also includes a broad swathe of the Baltic Sea itself. There are still some Livs, one of the smallest ethnic groups in Europe, living in the fishing villages of the region.

In this documentary on nature and its protection on the Latvian coast, observations of the animals are interlaced with atmospheric shots of the landscape in all seasons: blooming heathlands, small inland lakes, moors swathed in morning fog, swampy forests and practically untouched beaches, while aerial shots reveal why the national park is often called a "geological open-air museum".

The following episodes are available:

  • The National Park Slitere in Latvia, 45' only (HD)
  • The National Park Sumava in Czech Republic, 45' only (HD)
  • The National Park Lagodechi in Georgia (HD)
  • The National Park Belaweschskaja Puschtscha in Belarus (HD)
  • The National Park Pirin in Bulgaria
  • The National Park Kornati in Croatia
  • The National Park Volga Delta in Russia
  • The National Park Biebrza in Poland
  • The National Park High Tatra in Slovakia
  • The National Park of Kiskunsag in Hungary
  • The National Park of Vilsandi in Estonia