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Ushkan Islands

71

Ushkan islands are situated in the central part of lake Baikal. This group of islands consists of four islands – Tonkij (Thin), Dolgij (Long), Krouglij (Round) Ushkan islets and Bolshoy (Big) Ushkan island. 

The shores of the islands are rocky and covered with taiga forest. Ushkan islands are known as the biggest rookery of Baikal seals - nerpa. The fact of nerpas’ appearing in Baikal has not been completely studied yet but the scientists suppose Baikal seal swum up rivers Enisey, Angara and Lena in the ice age.

There are 100 thousand seals at Baikal. The seals can stay under water up to 20 minutes. They are very cautious and do not allow people to approach, they prefer to stay at a distance. 

72You can see Baikal seals at Ushkan islands having rest on a shore. The best way to do it is during a cruise across Baikal. Ushkan islands are the territory of Pribaikalskij National Park. Special permit is required to visit it.

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