The Estonian Ministry of Defense is to start restoring the Keretü bog located within the Nursipalu training ground in southeastern Võru County next summer, the news portal of public broadcaster ERR reported.
The bog will be restored to reduce the impact training conditions has on protected species and the natural environment. The area to be restored spans some 600 hectares, making up approximately a fifth of the territory of Nursipalu training ground.
The ministry will start preparations for restoring Keretü bog this fall-winter, while restoration work will start next summer. The cost of restoring the bog is approximately 170,000 euros.
Kaupo Kohv, head of the nature protection department at state forest manager RMK, said that Keretu bog is an important habitat for the wood grouse and the common crane.
"Restoring the bog will undoubtedly help the general improvement of the state of biodiversity at Nursipalu training ground and the overlapping Keretu nature reserve," Kohv said.
Kohv added that the principle of restoring the bog is simple in general -- it is necessary to restore the former natural water regime by closing ditches and creating a dam from soil taken locally.
Maris Freudenthal, head of the environment and planning field at the Ministry of Defense, said that the project was drawn up in close cooperation with RMK experts and has been coordinated with the Environmental Board.
The drawing up of a construction project and environmental impact assessment was launched in 2016 to establish necessary training conditions, like shooting grounds, a target area and road network, at Nursipalu training ground.
The project was presented to interested parties at the Nursi village center on May 27.
Editor: Helen Wright