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Camili Biosphere Reserve

   Camili is located in one of the 25 ecological land areas under threat, which are selected by Conservation International, World Bank and Global Environment Fund. It is also a part of the “Karçal Mountains Vital Vegetation Area”, which is one of Turkey’s selected 112 vegetation areas. In addition, it is monitored by WWF (World Wildlife Fund) in the scope of “Forests with a High Priority of Protection Project” in the Caucasian Ecological Region.

   Pure Caucasian queen bee race lives in Camili.  Furthermore, Camili has global importance because it is on one of the most important bird migration routes of the Western Palearctic region. It is also a part of the “East Black Sea Region Mountains Vital Birds Area” (ÖKA) and “Karçal Mountains Vital Birds Area.” The existence of Tetraogallus Caucasicus and Caucasian black grouse (Tetrao Mlokosiewiczi), which are Caucasian endemic species living in alpine grasslands is an indication of a healthy habitat. Some raptors like golden eagle (Aquila chrysaetus), Ruppell's Griffon vulture (Aegypus monachus), and peregrine falcon (Falco peregrinus) can be seen in the area. These are some of the reasons why Camili was chosen by Birdlife International as one of the 217 areas in the world with a high priority of protection. Recent studies show that the area’s being on one of the most important bird migration routes and harboring temperate zone forest biome species and alpine biome species indicate that it has the potential to be a separate “Vital Birds Area”.

    Efeler and Gorgit nature reserves in Camili Biosphere Reserve are very important protection zones.  There are 6 villages in Camili and 1280 people (300 households) live permanently in these villages. Their main sources of income are agriculture (mainly hazelnut cultivation) and livestock breeding. Recently developing tourism and beekeeping, which gained momentum with rise of the pure Caucasian queen bee, can be added to the list.

    Since the year 2000, “The Biological Diversity and Natural Resources Management Project” has been carried out in Camili Biosphere Reserve, which is the first biosphere reserve in Turkey, by the Ministry of Forestry and Water Affairs with the support and subsidies of Global Environment Fund (GEF).

Camili Efeler Nature Protection Zone
It was declared as nature protection zone by the Ministry in 1998. Efeler Forest is the natural forest ecosystem not only of Turkey but also of the whole Europe. There is a biosphere reserve zone in it and it has got rich biological variety. Moreover, it is also a protection zone for the race of pure caucasian bee.
Camili Gorgit Nature Protection Area
The biggest natural old forest ecosystems within a wider area including both Asia and Europe can be observed in this region. All trees of this region are regarded as “monument tree”. It both has “biosphere reserve Area”. This area is a special gene protection area for “Caucasian Honey Bee”.
Borçka Yeniyol Quarter Mosque
   The mosque was planned as a square frame. It was constructed with wood and bricks. It has a hipped roof which is covered with tile. The mosque has a top balcony which serves as narthex and has seven stakes. “Cümle” door located on north side is used as the way of entering mosque. On the north of “mahfil”, “köşk” part appears in the middle.    Straight wooden ceiling has been reinforced by ten stakes. Stairs being in north-west corner serve as entrance to “mahfil” “Mihrap” and “Minber” have been restored. The internal side of the mosque has been restored. Mosque has 13 windows. Minaret which has been modernized stands on northeast corner. Some parts of the mosque have been made with wooden engraving.
Düzköy Village Mosque
It is located in Düzköy of Borçka. Although there is not an epigraph on it, it was built in 1850 according to the researches which was conducted later. The mosque which is in good condition today thanks to the small renovations is open for praying. There is a basement floor which used to serve as a medrese (a type of school) under the structure and the square-shaped mosque was built on it. Despite the plainness of the structure’s exterior, the minbar, the mihrab, the parapets, the ceiling and some other parts were decorated with botanical, realistic and geometrical motifs. This shows the contradiction between the interior and the exterior of the mosque. It needs a comprehensive restoration.
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