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Information

Name:Natural System of Wrangel Island Reserve
Area:Northern Europe
Country:Russian Federation
Registered Year:2004 
Type:Cultural Heritage
Criteria:(ii)(iii)(iv)(v)
See description of criteria
Brief Description:
Located well above the Arctic Circle, the site includes the mountainous Wrangel Island (7,608-km2), Herald Island (11-km2) and surrounding waters. Wrangel was not glaciated during the Quaternary Ice Age resulting in exceptionally high levels of biodiversity for this region. The island boasts the world’s largest population of Pacific walrus and the highest density of ancestral polar bear dens. It is a major feeding ground for the gray whale migrating from Mexico and the northernmost nesting ground for 100 migratory bird species, many endangered. Currently, 417 species and sub-species of vascular plants have been identified on the island, double that of any other arctic tundra territory of comparable size and more than any other Arctic island. Some species are derivative of widespread continental forms, others are the result of recent hybridization, 23 are endemic.

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