The research into the birds of Polesie was initiated by Władysław Taczanowski (1819-1890) as far as in the nineteenth century. He used to come, i.a. to Wytyczno in order to do pioneering observations. Władysław Taczanowski was born not far from there – in Jabłonna near Lublin, and in his lifetime was a world-class ornithologist. Apart from having described many bird species which were new from the perspective of ornithology, his most important work was two-volume book entitled Birds of Poland [Ptaki Krajowe] (Taczanowski 1882). Although many years have passed, this priceless monograph is still quoted in many scientific papers as a precious source of information about birds which existed over 150 years ago, which increases the value of this position. For example, Taczanowski wrote about black-headed gulls: “…on Lake Wytyckie […], where there are usually several hundred pairs in a tiny space, moreover, in very wet summers, on some marshes in this vicinity”. What we can get to know about Eurasian curlew is: “Nowhere else is the curlew so numerous, even on the vastest national marshes, as near Wytyczno […] barely several pairs dispersed through mile spaces may be found” – what a pity that the habitat of curlews has irretrievably been meliorated and they cannot be found here as breeding birds!
Władysław Taczanowski was a pioneer of the research on birds of Polesie and simultaneously one of the best ornithologists in the world in the nineteenth century.
The Birds of Poland by Władysław Taczanowski was published in 1882 by the Polish Academy of Learning [Akademia Umiejętności] in Cracow. Till now the book is a relevant source of information about the birds of Polesie.
Yet another researcher dealing with the birds of Polesie was Prof. Sergiusz Riabinin (1918-1997) working at the Maria Curie-Skłodowska University in Lublin. His work entitled Badania nad ptakami Polesia Lubelskiego [The research on the birds of Polesie Lubelskie] (Riabinin 1962) is considered a summary of his many years’ work.
At the turn of the 1960s and 1970s a well-known Polish ornithologist from the University of Wrocław, Prof. Andrzej Dyrcz, was also conducting research. The Professor described and discovered many valuable areas for birds, especially in the vicinity of the present Polesie National Park (Dyrcz and others 1973).
[Breeding Birds Atlas of the Lublin Region]
In more modern times, i.e. at the turn of the twentieth and twenty-first century, a lot of relevant information about the birds of Polesie was published in a highly valuable monograph about the birds of the Lublin Region edited by Janusz Wójciak, Waldemar Biaduń, Tomasz Buczek and Małgorzata Piotrowska. This monograph is a summary of 20-year research on the birds of the Lublin Region created with the participation of a multitude of eminent amateur ornithologists from the Lublin Ornithologists’ Society. It also gives a range of valuable information on the birds of Polesie (Wójciak and others 2005).
Moreover, information on the birds of Polesie was also gathered in the newest book Birding in Poland, published in 2015 (Sterno 2015) and destined for foreigners.
Wójciak J., Biaduń W., Buczek T., Piotrowska M. 2005. Atlas ptaków lęgowych Lubelszczyzny. Lubelskie Towarzystwo Ornitologiczne, Lublin.
Sterno A. (red.) 2015. Birding in Poland. Orliolus Forlang.