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Luhasoo Landscape Reserve / DescriptionLuhasoo Landscape Reserve is located in the Rõuge parish and borders on the Pärlijõgi River and the Estonian-Latvian border. It has been under protection since 1981 as the largest intact mire complex in South Estonia which has remained virtually unaffected by human activity. The territory of the reserve is about 800 ha.
The Luhasoo mire has devel-oped from the lake basin, into which rivers flow and from where they start again - which is quite rare to find in Estonia. The species of the raised bog`s vegetation indicate the active intra-peat movement of water. This can be seen from the unusual bog plant associations, where in addition to andromeda, cranberry and cotton-grass, vegetation typical to lower lying fens can also be found: carexes, reed and bog bean. The bog is preserved as an example of lake-generated bogs which are typical to this area.
The Luhasoo mire has a high environmental and landscape protection value as an entire eco-system and as a habitat for protected species. The mire complex has been formed by a complicated water regime, and features a unique range of mire vegetation types. The 15 islands of mineral soil of the mire are very interesting.
There are also three bog lakes with low species richness and steep shores: lakes Mustjärv (6,9 ha), Tiksijärv (1,3 ha) and Püksijärv (0,3 ha). The main part of Luhasoo consists of raised bog covered with scattered trees and bog vegeta-tion and with bog pools.
It is possible to learn about the vegetation typical to the various stages of bog formation on the Luhasoo study trail, going through fen, transitional bog and raised bog vegetation communities. A booklet introducing the study trail is published in english as well.
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