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Geography of Moldova

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Political map of Moldova
Political map of Moldova
Satellite image of Moldova in September 2003
Satellite image of Moldova in September 2003

Located in Eastern Europe, Moldova is bordered on the west and southwest by Romania and on the north, south, and east by Ukraine. Most of its territory lies between the area's two main rivers, the Nistru and the Prut. The Nistru forms a small part of Moldova's border with Ukraine in the northeast and southeast, but it mainly flows through the eastern part of the country, separating Bessarabia and Transnistria. The Prut River forms Moldova's entire western boundary with Romania. The Danube touches the Moldovan border at its southernmost tip, and forms the border for 200 m (656 ft).

YouTube Encyclopedic

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  • ✪ Geography Now! MOLDOVA
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  • ✪ Geography Now! Chad
  • ✪ 15 Things You Didn't Know About Moldova
  • ✪ Geography Now! Romania (Fan Video)

Transcription

Hey everybody, so once again just like the last episode, I was stupid and I booked the wrong day at the YouTube space so this episode was filmed in my house. The audio quality is not gonna be as good, a black backdrop is totally visible. But hey, we got some good information in this episode. Oh and you can get one of these shirts: The blood of those who fight for the freedom Geographynow.com Anyway. Enjoy the episode. Imagine a person who speaks Russian, is Orthodox, eats borscht and lives in a state that is slowly trying to introduce market enterprise in a partial state-run system. Chances are, you're a Russian right? Nope, Latin. At least in Moldova. *Intro* It's time to learn Geography... NOW!!! Everyone, I'm your host Barb's. If you don't include microstates, Moldova is the European country with the least amount of visitors. And even then, Monaco, a microstate gets like three times more visitors. This episode is gonna be very fun. Because if you know me, I love diving into the obscure under-represented regions of the planet that need publicity boosts! So be honored, because today, you're about to enter the "Bob Saget of Europe". (Political Geography) Most people in the world probably won't be able to tell you where Moldova is on the map. If you can, congratulations, you're probably Moldovan First of all The country is landlocked, located in Eastern Europe, bordered by Romania to the west and Ukraine to the north, east and south. Yes, Ukraine, even took this one mile wide quarter on the Lower Dniester national park cutting off the closest access they COULD HAVE HAD to the Black Sea. The country is divided into 32 districts, with the capital and largest city, Chișinău, located in the south center of the country. In addition, they have three municipality citys: Chișinău itself being one, along with Bălți and Bender as well as two strange autonomous territorial units: Gagauzia and Transnistria, we'll talk more about these later. The country has only one main International airport: Chișinău International Otherwise Smaller uncertified or partially certified airports can be found in places like Bălți and Mărculești. Now after Chișinău, if you consider Transnistria part of Moldova, then the city of Tiraspol, their capital, would be the second largest one. Otherwise, Bălți would be next And speaking of which - let's just get it over with: What exactly are those two strange autonomous guys: Transnistria and Gagauzia? Well in the simplest way I can put it: Both of these places are a little more Russian influence from the rest of Moldova as if Moldova wasn't already Russian influence enough but to begin with but we'll talk about that later. Gagauzia is kind of like a more truly autonomous state in the fact that the people are culturally distinct with a Turkic Orthodox Christian background. They speak their own language, Gagauz Its split into four separate enclaves made up of these localities that have over 50% Gagauz populations including this small two-mile wide plot of farmland next to Carbalia. Even though they politically disagree with Moldova as in they've threatened that if Moldova tries to join the EU, they would opt out for independence and side with Russia. Regardless they are actually pretty chilled. You can visit and easily take pictures. See if you can get to one of those "Welcome to Gagauzia" signs on the road. Transnistria on the other hand is a little more tricky. They actually have declared independence in 1992, which has led to military conflict in the 90s after a ceasefire was established, they set up rules. But today it lies in a frozen conflict zone status. Today, they have their own government, militar,y police, postal system, currency vehicle registration. You even have to show your passport before crossing the border and with about a third of the population being Russian. It's no surprise that they side with Russia and have Russian peacekeepers to maintain the border security. Yeah, I know insert your opinion in the comments below. You can find lots of Soviet style symbols in their streets. In fact, they're the only state in the world that still uses the former USSR hammer and sickle in their flag. Russia: Whoa, we started that and even we don't have that anymore. Transnistria: Yeah, I'm just such a fan of your early work, you know! Some notable spots of interest might include places like: He's like the hero of the nation The sites of Old Orhei So many monasteries like these The State Circus in Chișinău And probably the most iconic landmark: the underground wine city of The Guinness world record largest wine collection in the world with over 120 kilometers of tunnels and corridors. Yeah, they love wine. Let's talk more about resources and such in: (Physical Geography) Now if you don't know anything about Moldova's land. One thing you definitely should know is: WINE. Most houses in the countryside and even some of the cities have wine cellars. It's kind of like what saunas are to Finland. Finland: Huh. great analogy. Yeah, I get it. First of all Moldova's land is mostly situated between the two longest rivers of the country: The Prut which makes up the entire western border with Romania and the Dniester with Ukraine But then was Transnistria a series of arbitrary lines through flat farm fields goals passed the river. Hence, where the name Transnistria comes from, "Across the Dniester". The country is made up of small short forested hills cut by numerous creeks and rivers. The tallest point being only 430 meters high, Bălănești hill and all of which are part of the Moldovan plateau which extends into the larger Carpathian mountain chain. The largest natural lakes would be either the Manta and the Beleu, located right on the border with Romania. And right at the very southernmost tip of Moldova, they have a small 200 metre coast with the Danube and their only shipping port with access at Giurgiulești which is essentially the only indirect point of access they have to the Black Sea which is kind of important. All right, animation is done. So you know what that means? That means is it time for my triple shot of espresso break. Noah takes over as co-host in this segment so I don't end up losing my voice before this episode is over. But the man, I think you have a problem. Don't care, take it away! About half the country is arable and chances are no matter where you travel, you will find a vineyard. As mentioned before, Moldova takes wine very seriously. And for a nation as far as they are on the world stage, it's amazing they've ranked 12th in wine production. They even have a holiday to celebrate it Their lush landscape is home and various animal species like Brown bears European hares Minxes Great egrets White storks And the national animal: the Oryx You can even find it on their coat of arms. Just north of the capital, you can find one of the largest gypsum caves in the world containing over 20 underground lakes. Food-wise, they pretty much follow the same format as Romania. You have things like: You'll notice everything kind of has a Slavic twist to it. Lots of sour cream added to soups. Borscht, a sour tasting soup is popular as well as pickled vegetables. Economy-wise, things really changed up after independence from the Soviet Union Paid policy changed and for a while, they had a huge inflation rate after switching currencies Today, they are classified as the poorest country in Europe in terms of GDP per capita. And to address if they had to switch up a few things. One thing they did was they greatly lose the foreign investment barriers to pretty much anything as long as it didn't go against the interest of national security in order. Also purchasing agriculture in forested lands are forbidden. Even so, not much changed and it's partially because Well, it kind of went like this: Moldova: All right, independence! Ready to take on the world! Sweet. So what are you gonna do now? You're gonna open up a market economy? Moldova: Yes... Technically... I mean, you know, I'm still gonna lie kind of haven't really regulate wages and prices and add a few legal restrictions. But yes! Privatization and whatnot. Okay. In that case, when are you going to announce this globally? Moldova: Ehh, we'll get to that later. First I need some wine. Yep, Moldova kind of lacks in the PR department for now. Otherwise there is a slow but steady overall growth, but it's always kind of hindered by domestic problems Looks like a great time to discuss more of that, in: (Demographics) Thank You, Noah! Follow him on Instagram. Now it really does kind of seem like in order to understand Moldova, You kind of have to understand Romania first because it's so important. But alas, these videos are done alphabetically. So sorry Romania: I shouldn't name myself "Lomania" Chinese: Someone said Lo mein? Getting off topic. Anyway, including the disputed autonomous regions of Gagauzia and Transnistria, Moldova has about 3.3 million people and has seen a decline since the peak at 3.7 in 1992. The country is made up of about three-quarters that identify as Moldovan and 7% Romanian, but in all honestly, they're pretty much the same people. After that, there is a noticeable Ukrainian minority at about 6.6%, Gagauz at about 4.6%, and the rest are mostly Russian, Bulgarians, Romani and other groups. They use the Moldova leu as their currency. They use the type C plug outlet and they drive on the right side of the road. Now what exactly is a Moldovian? Well in the shortest simplest way I can put it: Unless you talk to want to one of the incredibly nationalistic ones that will start a debate: They're basically Romanians. They speak pretty much the exact same language except the Moldovan might use a few Russian slang words here and there but essentially they're pretty much just speaking the same thing. For those who don't know, the Romanian language is actually a Latin based Romance language related to French, Italian and Spanish. It is the easternmost Romance language in Europe. I've heard stories from Latin Americans and Romanians meeting each other. They're kind of like "Hmm, I kind of understand a bit of what you're saying." Where they differ though would be politics and history. This is kind of what separated them. Very so much of what happens at the Koreas, remember those episode. My mom was in one of them. Essentially even though they were part of the Warsaw Pact, Romania never became a Soviet republic whereas Moldova did and then they kind of became somewhat Russia-fied. Eventually, Romania leaned more towards capitalistic interests and eventually joined the EU. Moldova never did. So basically, what you have are two siblings that were brought up in different schools and taught very different lessons from the two drastically different faculties. Today, most Moldovans are bilingual with Russian and you can still see hints of the Soviet past and influence. But like it's 50 times stronger in Transnistria. They are like turbo-Russia fans! One way you can see the influence for example would be the fact that Over 90% of the nation, to varying degrees of devotion, identify as being part of the Orthodox Church. Nonetheless, they still held on pretty well to their roots. They have a plethora of traditional Moldovan folk arts and music. Ancient ballads like these. They have a holiday in July where everyone just kind of puts on a culture show. Moldovan ceramics and weaving culture has always been a trademark of the country's identity. Keep in mind They also have a noticeable Gypsy or Roma community especially in the town of Soroca. They even have a "King of gypsies" This guy, he acts more of like a communal facilitator rather than an actual ruler. It's interesting though, because no matter how hard the Slavic culture has tried to permeate through their populace, They just could not let go with their passionate Latin roots. Moldovans have always kind of had like a little bit of a humor aside. They don't mope around and let life or struggle get to them. They love it when anybody notices them and when they do they don't hesitate to put on the show especially when it comes to Eurovision Wow They celebrate harvest festivals, a car-free day, a huge music festival in March. Anyway, we go on and on but we got to discuss the history. In the quickest way I can put it: The Trypillia culture The Dracians The Romans Bulgars, Hungarians and other tribes invade Mongols came by Turks come in Stephen the Great, the hero of the nation wins 44 battles They end up becoming an Ottoman vassal state Russia comes in and annex what they called Bessarabia After WWI, Romania came in they unified After WWII, the Soviet Union came back in They become a Soviet republic Moldova becomes very Russianised until 1991 independence The Dniester war with Transnistria Scandals, protests. They can't figure out who they want as a president for like three years, And here we are today. Now I ask some of you guys, the Moldovan Geograpeeps to give me a list of some of the most famous Moldovan people in your opinion and here's some that you mentioned: The guy who made that Numa Numa song They said he kind of "counts". Alright. Cool people and even cooler ties to the rest of the world. Which brings us to: (Friend Zone) Yes, Europe's most obscure nation, Moldova has always kind of wanted to break out and show the world what they're made of. First of all They get along with many of the other former Soviet states, especially the Caucasus ones like Armenia Azerbaijan and Georgia. Although business isn't that strong between them, They still love to share stories whenever they visit each other. Ukraine is probably the closest one though as they are a major trade and import partner. Many Ukrainians live in Moldova and they've been key players in their history. Now since independence, Moldova has always kind of been in between a tug of war match between Russia and the EU. Recently Moldova has expressed a great desire to join the EU and follow the footsteps of their brothers, Romania and preference have been waning towards their former Empire rulers accepting Transnistria and Gagauzia. And whenever Moldova becomes a little too European, Russia tugs harder at these two areas which kind of keeps Moldova in a slight limbo state diplomatically In terms of their best friends though, almost every single Moldovan I talked to has said the same country: Romania It's not even a friendship. It's literally a family. These two countries understand each other better than anyone else and despite the small differences, they are one blood. Many people have family in each country. They share the same language, stories food, and weird Eastern Latino culture. In conclusion: Moldova is like a heavily Slavic influenced Orthodox Latino nation with two strange breakaway children. But when it gets a little too much for them to handle, they just sit down and sip the wine. Stay tuned, Monaco is coming up next!

Contents

Basic data

Location: Eastern Europe, northeast of Romania
Geographic coordinates: 47°00′N 29°00′E / 47.000°N 29.000°E / 47.000; 29.000
Map references: Commonwealth of Independent States
Area:
  • total: 33,851 km²
  • land: 32,891 km²
  • water: 960 km²
Area - comparative:
Land boundaries:
  • total: 1,390 km
  • border countries: Romania 450 km, Ukraine 940 km
Coastline: 0 km (landlocked)
Maritime claims: none (landlocked)
Natural resources: lignite, phosphorites, gypsum, arable land, limestone
Land use:
  • arable land: 53.47%
  • permanent crops: 8.77%
  • other: 37.75% (2011)
Irrigated land: 2,283 km² (2011)
Total renewable water resources: 11.65 km 3
Natural hazards: landslides (57 cases in 1998)

Climate

Moldova's proximity to the Black Sea gives it a mild and sunny climate.

Moldova's climate is moderately continental: the summers are warm and long, with temperatures averaging about 20 °C (68 °F), and the winters are relatively mild and dry, with January temperatures averaging −4 °C (25 °F). Annual rainfall, which ranges from around 6 centimeters (2.4 in) in the north to 4 centimeters (1.6 in) in the south, can vary greatly; long dry spells are not unusual. The heaviest rainfall occurs in early summer and again in October; heavy showers and thunderstorms are common. Because of the irregular terrain, heavy summer rains often cause erosion and river silting.

Weather records. The highest temperature ever recorded: +41.5 °C (106.7 °F) on July 21, 2007 (Camenca). The lowest temperature ever recorded: −35.5 °C (−31.9 °F) on January 20, 1963 (Brătuşeni, Edineţ county).

Chişinău's climate. (Central Moldova)

Climate data for Chişinău
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 15.5
(59.9)
20.7
(69.3)
25.7
(78.3)
31.6
(88.9)
35.9
(96.6)
37.1
(98.8)
39.4
(102.9)
39.2
(102.6)
37.3
(99.1)
32.6
(90.7)
23.6
(74.5)
18.3
(64.9)
39.4
(102.9)
Average high °C (°F) 0.9
(33.6)
2.6
(36.7)
8.1
(46.6)
15.4
(59.7)
22.0
(71.6)
25.2
(77.4)
27.5
(81.5)
27.2
(81.0)
21.5
(70.7)
15.1
(59.2)
7.5
(45.5)
2.3
(36.1)
14.6
(58.3)
Daily mean °C (°F) −1.9
(28.6)
−0.8
(30.6)
3.7
(38.7)
10.4
(50.7)
16.5
(61.7)
19.9
(67.8)
22.1
(71.8)
21.7
(71.1)
16.3
(61.3)
10.5
(50.9)
4.1
(39.4)
−0.6
(30.9)
10.2
(50.4)
Average low °C (°F) −4.3
(24.3)
−3.6
(25.5)
0.2
(32.4)
5.9
(42.6)
11.6
(52.9)
15.2
(59.4)
17.3
(63.1)
16.9
(62.4)
12.0
(53.6)
6.8
(44.2)
1.6
(34.9)
−2.8
(27.0)
6.4
(43.5)
Record low °C (°F) −28.4
(−19.1)
−28.9
(−20.0)
−21.1
(−6.0)
−6.6
(20.1)
−1.1
(30.0)
3.6
(38.5)
7.8
(46.0)
5.5
(41.9)
−2.4
(27.7)
−10.8
(12.6)
−21.6
(−6.9)
−22.4
(−8.3)
−28.9
(−20.0)
Average precipitation mm (inches) 36
(1.4)
31
(1.2)
34
(1.3)
40
(1.6)
48
(1.9)
66
(2.6)
64
(2.5)
56
(2.2)
51
(2.0)
37
(1.5)
38
(1.5)
41
(1.6)
542
(21.3)
Average snowfall cm (inches) 7
(2.8)
6
(2.4)
3
(1.2)
0
(0)
0
(0)
0
(0)
0
(0)
0
(0)
0
(0)
0
(0)
1
(0.4)
3
(1.2)
20
(7.9)
Average rainy days 8 7 11 13 14 14 12 10 10 10 11 9 129
Average snowy days 13 13 8 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 5 11 51
Average relative humidity (%) 82 78 71 63 60 63 62 60 66 73 81 83 70
Mean monthly sunshine hours 74.4 81.9 124.0 186.0 254.2 282.0 297.6 294.5 225.0 170.5 75.0 58.9 2,124
Source #1: Pogoda.ru.net[1]
Source #2: HKO (sun only 1961–1990).[2]

Bălți's climate. (Northern Moldova)

Climate data for Bălți
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) −0.5
(31.1)
1.3
(34.3)
7.0
(44.6)
15.9
(60.6)
22.0
(71.6)
24.9
(76.8)
26.2
(79.2)
26.0
(78.8)
21.8
(71.2)
15.2
(59.4)
7.6
(45.7)
2.1
(35.8)
14.1
(57.4)
Average low °C (°F) −7.5
(18.5)
−5.4
(22.3)
−1.6
(29.1)
4.5
(40.1)
9.9
(49.8)
13.1
(55.6)
14.5
(58.1)
13.5
(56.3)
9.5
(49.1)
4.3
(39.7)
0.3
(32.5)
−4.0
(24.8)
4.2
(39.6)
Average precipitation mm (inches) 31
(1.2)
28
(1.1)
28
(1.1)
44
(1.7)
55
(2.2)
86
(3.4)
79
(3.1)
49
(1.9)
43
(1.7)
22
(0.9)
34
(1.3)
30
(1.2)
529
(20.8)
Average precipitation days 11 11 9 11 12 13 11 8 8 6 9 11 120
Source: World Weather Information Service[3]

Tiraspol's climate. (Central Moldova)

Climate data for Tiraspol
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) 0.7
(33.3)
2.3
(36.1)
7.8
(46.0)
16.5
(61.7)
22.5
(72.5)
25.8
(78.4)
27.4
(81.3)
27.3
(81.1)
23.0
(73.4)
16.1
(61.0)
8.6
(47.5)
3.3
(37.9)
15.1
(59.2)
Average low °C (°F) −6.1
(21.0)
−4.3
(24.3)
−0.7
(30.7)
5.1
(41.2)
10.3
(50.5)
13.8
(56.8)
15.5
(59.9)
14.7
(58.5)
10.3
(50.5)
5.3
(41.5)
1.3
(34.3)
−2.8
(27.0)
5.2
(41.4)
Average precipitation mm (inches) 33
(1.3)
35
(1.4)
28
(1.1)
35
(1.4)
52
(2.0)
72
(2.8)
63
(2.5)
49
(1.9)
38
(1.5)
26
(1.0)
36
(1.4)
38
(1.5)
495
(19.5)
Average precipitation days 11 11 9 10 11 11 10 7 7 7 11 11 116
Source: World Weather Information Service[4]

Cahul's climate. (Southern Moldova)

Climate data for Cahul, Moldova
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) 0.2
(32.4)
1.8
(35.2)
7.9
(46.2)
15.9
(60.6)
21.6
(70.9)
25.0
(77.0)
26.8
(80.2)
26.5
(79.7)
22.6
(72.7)
15.9
(60.6)
8.5
(47.3)
2.6
(36.7)
14.6
(58.3)
Average low °C (°F) −5.7
(21.7)
−3.7
(25.3)
−0.2
(31.6)
5.6
(42.1)
11.1
(52.0)
14.5
(58.1)
16.0
(60.8)
15.7
(60.3)
11.9
(53.4)
6.6
(43.9)
1.9
(35.4)
−2.7
(27.1)
5.9
(42.6)
Average precipitation mm (inches) 36
(1.4)
39
(1.5)
33
(1.3)
41
(1.6)
56
(2.2)
76
(3.0)
66
(2.6)
56
(2.2)
48
(1.9)
28
(1.1)
38
(1.5)
40
(1.6)
557
(21.9)
Average precipitation days 12 13 10 10 11 11 10 8 7 7 11 12 122
Source: World Weather Information Service[5]

Topography

Moldavian Plateau
Topography

Bukovinian Subcarpathians
Moldavian Subcarpathians


Suceava Plateau
Dniester Hills
Moldavian Plain
Bârlad Plateau
Central Moldavian Plateau


Bugeac Plain

Hydrography

Danube
Siret (Moldova, Suceava)
Prut
Dniester (Răut)
Black Sea

Climate

Romania
Moldova

Flora & Fauna

Flora of Romania
Flora of Moldova
List of mammals in Romania
List of mammals in Moldova
Protected areas in Romania
Protected areas in Moldova

Topography of Moldova
Topography of Moldova

Most of Moldova's territory is a moderate hilly plateau cut deeply by many streams and rivers. Geologically, Moldova lies primarily on deep sedimentary rock that gives way to harder crystalline outcroppings only in the north. Moldova's hills are part of the Moldavian Plateau, which geologically originate from the Carpathian Mountains.

The northern landscape of Moldova is characterized by gently rolling uplands of the Dniester Hills (up to 300 m or 984 ft, in elevation) interlaced with small flat plains in the valleys of the numerous creeks (at 150 m or 492 ft elevation). These hills, which have an average altitude of 240 meters (787 ft) and a maximum altitude of 320 meters (1,050 ft), can be divided into the Northern Moldavian Hills and the Dniester Ridge, and continue further occupying the northern part of the Chernivtsi oblast in Ukraine. The eastern slopes of the Dniester Ridge (average 250 meters or 820 feet, max 347 meters or 1,138 feet), form the high right bank of the Dniester River.

The Moldavian Plain has an average of 200 meters (656 ft) and a maximum altitude of 250 meters (820 ft), and can be divided into the Bălți Steppe and the Middle Prut Valley. Originally forested, it has been extensively de-forested for agriculture during the 19th and 20th centuries. In contrast to the region to the north and south, which is smore slant, this area is referred to as plain, although it has relief very different from that of a flatland, and vegetation different from that of the steppe.

Geology of Moldova
Geology of Moldova

The hills of central Moldova, the Central Moldavian Plateau, at an average elevation of about 350 to 400 m (1,148 to 1,312 ft), are ridges interlaced by deep, flat valleys, ravines, and landslide-scoured depressions. Steep forest-clad slopes account for much of the terrain, where the most common trees are hornbeam, oak, linden, maple, wild pear, and wild cherry. The term Codri refers more generally to all the forests between the Carpathians and the Dniester river, and even more generally to all forests in the area of the Carpathians, yet since in Moldova most of them were preserved in the central part, Codri sometimes can colloquially refer to the remaining forests in the hills west and north of Chişinău. The Dniester Ridge border Central Moldavian Plateau to the north along the river Răut.

The plateau can be divided into 5 parts: Ciuluc-Soloneţ Hills (Romanian: Dealurile Ciuluc-Soloneţ), elongated in the north along the right side of the Răut river, 1,690 km2 (653 sq mi), Corneşti Hills (Romanian: Dealurile Corneştilor), also known as Cordi Hills (Romanian: Dealurile Codrilor), 4,740 km2 (1,830 sq mi), Lower Dniester Hills (Romanian: Dealurile Nistrului Inferior), elongated to the south of the Botna river, 3,040 km2 (1,174 sq mi), Tigheci Hills (Romanian: Dealurile Tigheciului), elongated in the south along the left side of the Prut river, 3,550 km2 (1,371 sq mi), and between the latter and the Prut river, the Lower Prut Valley (Romanian: Valea Prutului Inferior), 1,810 km2 (699 sq mi).

The country's highest point, Bălăneşti Hill, which reaches 1,407 or 1,410 ft (428.9 or 429.8 m), depending on the source, is situated in the Corneşti Hills, the western part of the Central Moldavian Plateau. Northwest of it are the Ciuluc-Soloneţ Hills (average 250 meters or 820 feet, max 388 meters or 1,273 feet). In the south, the Tigheci Hills (average 200 meters or 656 feet, max 301 meters or 988 feet) are a prolongation, and run to the south parallel to the Lower Prut Valley.

To the south-east, the southern part of the Central Moldavian Plateau, which averages 150–200 meters (492–656 ft), max 250 meters (820 ft), and has numerous ravines and gullies, gradually vanishs into the extensive Bugeac Plain, with most of the Budjak region already in Ukraine.

Transnistria (the left bank of the Dniester) has spurs of the Podolian Plateau (Romanian: Podişul Podoliei, Ukrainian: Volyno-Podil's'ka vysochyna), (average 180 meters or 591 feet, max 275 meters or 902 feet), which are cut into by tributaries of the Dniester River. The southern half of Transnistria, the Lower Dniester Plain, can be regarded as the western end of the Eurasian steppe, and has an average elevation of 100 meters (328 ft), with a maximum of 170 meters (558 ft). The high right bank and low left bank of the Dniester are in sharp contrast here, where visibility is not impeded by forests.

About 75 percent of Moldova is covered by a soil type called black earth or chernozem. In the northern hills, more clay textured soils are found; in the south, red-earth soil is predominant. The soil becomes less fertile toward the south but can still support grape and sunflower production. The hills have woodland soils, while a small portion in southern Moldova is in the steppe zone, although most steppe areas today are cultivated. The lower reaches of the Prut and Dniester rivers and the southern river valleys are saline marshes.

Drainage in Moldova is to the south, toward the Black Sea lowlands, and eventually into the Black Sea, but only eight rivers and creeks extend more than 100 kilometers. Moldova's main river, the Dniester, is navigable throughout almost the entire country, and in warmer winters it does not freeze over. The Prut river is a tributary of the Danube, which it joins at the far southwestern tip of the country. Over 95% of the water circulation in Moldova flows into one of the two rivers - the Prut or Dniester. Of Moldova's well-developed network of about 3,000 creeks and streams, all draining south to the Black Sea, only 246 exceed 6 mi (9.7 km) in length, and only 8 exceed 60 mi (96.6 km).

Underground water, extensively used for the country's water supply, includes about 2,200 natural springs. The terrain favours construction of reservoirs of various size.

Extreme points

Natural habitat

Natural habitat of Moldova
Natural habitat of Moldova
A Nistru valley view.
A Nistru valley view.

Moldova's natural habitat is characterized by forest steppes, a temperate-climate habitat type composed of grassland interspersed with areas of woodland or forest. A belt of forest steppes cross Eurasia from eastern Europe to Eastern Siberia, forming a transition between temperate broadleaf and mixed forests and temperate grasslands. In the 19th century Moldova witnessed a sharp decrease in the forested areas, sacrificed for agriculture due to rich soil.

land formation[6] area, km² of which currently forests, km² % forests habitat type
Northern Moldavian Hills 4,630 476 10.3% forest steppe
Dniester-Rāut Ridge 2,480 363 14.6% forest steppe
Middle Prut Valley 2,930 312 10.6% forest steppe
Bălți Steppe 1,920 51 2.7% steppe
Ciuluc-Soloneţ Hills 1,690 169 10.0% forest steppe
Corneşti Hills (Codru) 4,740 1,300 27.5% forest
Lower Dniester Hills 3,040 371 12.2% forest steppe
Lower Prut Valley 1,810 144 8.0% forest steppe
Tigheci Hills 3,550 533 15.0% forest steppe
Bugeac Plain 3,210 195 6.1% steppe
part of Podolian Plateau 1,920 175 9.1% forest steppe
part of Eurasian Steppe 1,920 140 7.3% steppe
Total 33,840 4,228 12,5% forest steppe

Environment

Stamp of Moldova 285.gif
Stamp of Moldova 293.gif

Historical references

  • In the 5th century BC, Herodotus visited the countryside between the rivers Dnister and Prut and described the place as "a plain with deep black earth, rich in grass and well irrigated".
  • Lithuanian Prince Jogaila spoke of Moldavia as "a rich and fructiferous country".
  • According to the testimony of Venetian Mateus de Murano, "the country was very well located, reach with cattle and all kinds of fruits, pastures are perfect".
  • Rich natural resources of Moldavia always attracted nomads. Fleeing their devastating incursions, inhabitants of Moldavia left the brooded places and hid in forests. French knight Guilbert de Lannoy, who visited these places in 1421, has mentioned insignificant population of the region: "we moved through large deserts".
  • Counsellor of Hungarian King George Reihersdorf (middle of 16th century) was complaining of travel through "empty, uninhabited lands". In 1541, he produced the first geographical map (preserved to this day) of the Principality of Moldavia, with rivers Dnister and Prut shown, as well as cities and other localities, but also highlighted large steppes.
  • A map of Moldavia was drawn by the German diplomat Sigismund von Herberstein. On his map one can see woodless spaces - Bălți steppe in the north, and Bugeac Steppe in the south.
  • In the 17th century, pilgrims Pavel Aleppskii (a Syrian deacon) and Ioan Lukianov (a Russian preast) traveled on their way to the Holy land through Moldavia. These two travellers were struck by the disastrous state of the land that used to blossom: "It better be not ravaged, as no other such can be found, it may yield any kind".
  • English traveller John Bell, who also visited Moldavia, and wrote about fecund soils and "small nice towns" situated next to Răut.
  • Russian geographer K. Laksman described Bălți steppe in the beginning of the 19th century: "To the north is located a steppe with almost no trees at all. To the north-west the steppe is not as woodless".
  • Scientist K. Arseniev mentioned that the north of Bessarabia is "a genuine mix of arid steppes with most fertile pastures, rich meadows and gardens".
  • Travelers and scholars were amazed by the contrast between rich natural resources of Moldavia/Bălți steppe and its low population in war torned 18th century, pitiful state of agriculture, as well as the poverty of the local population.
  • "Desert, waste, naked steppe... The settling among limitless expanses of Bălți steppe happened not "in accordnace" with logic, but "against" it. The life of remote ancestors of Bălțiers was full of difficulties and crosses, but they managed to resist."[citation needed]
  • "Moldavian fields, as described by both ancient and contemporary writers, are great in their fertility, by far surpassing the richness of the mountains" (Dimitrie Cantemir, Descriptio Moldaviae)
  • "Will someone describe Bessarabian steppes, indeed, they do merit a description. However for this, one needs the talent of unforgettable Gogol, who has so beautifully depicted us the steppes of his homeland. And Bessarabian steppes are not less beautiful." (Constantin Stamati-Ciurea)

Current issues

Moldova's communist-era environmental legacy, like that of many other former Soviet republics, is one of environmental degradation. Agricultural practices such as overuse of pesticides and artificial fertilizers were intended to increase agricultural output at all costs, without regard for the consequences. As a result, Moldova's soil and groundwater were contaminated by lingering chemicals, some of which (including DDT) have been banned in the West.

Such practices continue in Moldova to the present day. [7] In the early 1990s, use of pesticides in Moldova averaged approximately twenty times that of other former Soviet republics and Western nations. In addition, poor farming methods, such as destroying forests to plant vineyards, have contributed to the extensive soil erosion to which the country's rugged topography is already prone.

International environmental agreements

party to: Air Pollution, Air Pollution-Persistent Organic Pollutants, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands

signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

See also

Notes

  1. ^ "Pogoda.ru.net" (in Russian). Retrieved February 7, 2012.
  2. ^ Sunshine hours for Kisinev, Moldova, accessed 9 January 2014.
  3. ^ "Weather Information for Bălți". World Weather Information Service. Retrieved 6 January 2008.
  4. ^ "Weather Information for Tiraspol". World Weather Information Service. Retrieved 6 January 2008.
  5. ^ "Weather Information for Cahul". World Weather Information Service. Retrieved 6 January 2008.
  6. ^ Concept of National Ecological Network of the Republic of Moldova
  7. ^ NATO. "Destroying dangerous pesticides in Moldova". NATO. Retrieved 2016-11-11.

External links

This page was last edited on 8 July 2019, at 12:03
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