An enormous herd of bison, described by scientists as the largest they have ever seen, has been spotted in the Białowieża forest in eastern Poland.
The sighting is surprising because the last bear to be seen in the Białoweża forest was 2010 – and western Belarus does not have a significant bear population, suggesting that this bear may have travelled from as far as central or eastern Belarus.
The State Forest Authority warned that unless urgent action was taken, the ‘mysterious’ military facility in the town of Hajnówka that lies on the western edge of the forest could trigger a devastating fire.
Decisions of the Polish authorities to increase logging in the Bialowieza Forest violate EU law, the EU Court of Justice ruled in Luxembourg on Tuesday, pointing out that they cannot be justified by the unprecedented gradation of the European spruce bark beetle.
The European bison population in the Polish part of Bialowieza Forest on the Poland-Belarus border has grown to 654 animals, the Bialowieza National Park informed Tuesday after carrying out an annual census.
Polish Environment Minister Henryk Kowalczyk said on Tuesday that Warsaw respects the opinion of the Advocate General of the European Court of Justice, who stated earlier in the day that Poland's increased logging in the Bialowieza Forest breaks EU law.
The European Union has accepted Poland's explanation regarding logging in the Bialowieza Forest and for the time being has no plans to ask the European Court of Justice to fine Poland, an EU sources has told PAP.
Warsaw has sent a letter to the European Commission in which the government describes how it will implement the decision of the EU Court of Justice regarding the ban on logging in the Bialowieza Forest, PAP has learned from diplomatic sources.