Nature reserves, 127 in total, create a network extending nearly over the whole of Pomerania. Completely untamed and barely-touched ecosystems, peculiar types of fauna and flora, and elements of inanimate environment – all this forms the hallmark of our region and testifies to its uniqueness and alluring quality, particularly in terms of tourism.
The Seagull Shoal
The Seagull Shoal, a nature reserve that has been in existence since the 1990s, is a natural attraction, the most of which is located within Gdańsk city borders. It features the breeding sites and haunts of many rare species.
The Seagull Shoal Reserve is located on both sides of the Vistula, which since the 19th Century has been led through an artificial canal called Przekop Wisły (literally, "the Vistula Dug-through"). Part of the reserve lies on its western side, Sobieszewska Island, while the larger, eastern part is located in the Stegna Commune, near Mikoszew. The reserve was established mainly for the purpose of protecting the sites where thousands of migratory and sea birds gather in order to build nests and brood their eggs. This place is very attractive for birds mainly due to the limited availability of uninhabited land in the Baltic area, especially the sandy islands on which birds feel safe both from people and their natural enemies, of which the foxes living nearby are the worst. Among the birds benefiting from the reserve are various species of seagulls and terns. However, there are other animals protected in this area. As a curiosity, groups of seals varying in number can be encountered there. In addition, lakes and ponds in the area of the reserve are inhabited by beavers. The protection level enforced here does not prohibit visiting the reserve, as there is a special path from which one can admire the beauty of nature and, with a little bit of luck, there is a chance to see young seals sporting about in the near-shore waters.
Despite the restrictions connected with the protective nature of the reserve and the necessity to obey the rules applying to visitors, this is a place worth going to, as it offers the possibility to enjoy the beauty of wild nature.