FRU�KA GORA


FRUSKA GORA ďż˝ national park

Fruska Gora�is proclaimed a National Park in 1960 in order to provide its permanent protection and to improve its natural resources and beauty. The area of active protection is 25.525 ha.
Fruska Gora is an isolated, narrow, island mountain in Pannonia plain. It is intended by river courses extending to the south and north, with some side ranges with steep slopes, spreading from the main narrow range. Its location, specific geological history and different microclimatic conditions make it very interesting and important to science. Thanks to unique and very rich deposits of fossil fauna and flora, Fruska Gora is called the 'mirror of geological past'.
The main characteristic of this region is the existence of numerous protected, rare and endangered species.
Fruska Gora's valleys are covered with pastures and fertile fields, numerous vineyards and orchards which decorate its lower slopes while higher ground, above 300 meters, is covered with dense deciduous forests.
Fruska Gora hides 16 orthodox monasteries famous for their specific architecture, treasuries, libraries and frescoes and numerous archeological sites from prehistoric and historic times as well.
Due to its outstanding natural resources, wonderful landscapes, exceptional charm and beauty, that will bring you closer to nature, Fruska Gora is ideal place for rest and recreation.

HISTORY

Park visitors will find many of historical and cultural monuments hidden in the forests and elsewhere. Whole this area was exposed to numerous conquerors so that there are only a few of the earliest monuments within the Park dating back to Old Ages, such as Acumincum fortress near Stari Slankamen or Malata Bononia at Cerevic.
However, quite a number of medieval monuments are well preserved. These include remains of ancient fortress near Slankamen, remains of Vrdnik tower, famous Petrovaradin Fortress, The Peace Chapel in Sremski Karlovci and others.
Several monasteries scattered all over Fruska Gora are of special interest. They were destroyed on numerous occasions, rebuilt, destroyed again and finally restored in the late sixties. In the Second World War they suffered heavy damages and plunders, their art treasuries were burnt up, frescoes and paintings destroyed. Thus only ruins remain of once lovely monasteries of Besanovac, Kuvezdin and Sisatovac.
Monasteries of Rakovac, Djipsa, Grgeteg, Jazak, Hopovo and Velika Remeta suffered heavy damages also. Some of them have been completely or partially restored, although their frescoes and treasuries were not saved from destruction. Such in case with Krusedol, Vrdnik, Mala Remeta, Petkovica and Pribina Glava monasteries.
Recent history also left numerous traces here. During the Second World War when almost all of Europe was under German occupation, Fruska Gora boasted of being never completely under the German command. Some parts of it always remained as a liberated territory. Each village keeps memories of those days, while at Iriski venac big monument was erected to the Partizans of Srem, the work of sculptor Sreten Stojanovic.

MONASTERIES

The Fruska Gora Monasteries are the unique group of thickly situated monasteries built in the period from XV to XVIII century.35 monasteries were built in a marvelous natural setting. Fifteen have been preserved till today. This historical and sacral complex has been enlisted for UNESCO program of protection.
Once these monasteries have been symbol of Serbian national resistance against Ottoman Empire and guardians of the great national treasuries of sacral arts, relicts and architecture.Serbian orthodox church communities exist there at the monasteries of: Krusedol, Petkovica, Rakovac, Velika RemetaDivsa, Novo Hopovo, Staro Hopovo, Jazak, Mala Remeta, Grgeteg, Beocin, Privina Glava, Sisatovac, Kuvezedin, and Vrdnik-Ravanica.
According to historical data, these monastery communities have existed since the first decades of the sixteenth century, but the legends relate their founding to the period between the 12th and fifteenth centuries. The monasteries are concentrated in an area 50 kilometers long, and 10 kilometers wide. In the course of five centuries of existance, these monasteries sustained the spiritual and political life of the Serbian nation.
The monasteries were founded in a period of great wars and migrations, and they became centers where the cult of the Brankovic Family (the last of the Serbian despotic families) was carefully nurtured, using the Nemanjic family dynasty as a model. Of equal importance in understanding the spiritual life of the Fruska Gora monasteries are the cults of individual saints, whose relics attracted both pilgrims and patrons to the monasteries.
The donations of pilgrims and the highly developed sense of patronage among the Serbs served to heighten religious feelings, stimulating the further construction, decoration and replenishment of the monasteries. Monasteries of Fruska Gora are a unique part of the religious, educational, and cultural being of the Serbian nation, and cultural heritage of Yugoslavia.
Monasteries Sisatovac, Novo Hopovo, Vrdnik-Ravanica, Beocin, Privina glava and Jazak still suffer consequences of detonations, explosions and side effects caused by NATO warplanes.

FLORA

Flora at Fruska gora mountain is very diverse and specific.
There are about 1500 flora species growing on the protected zone of national park. This amount of different flora species is characteristic for higher mountains of Serbia than Fruska gora.
Fifteen (Anthyrium, Asplenium, Cheilanthes, Cystopteris, Dryopteris, Gymnocarpium etc.) genus of ferns (Pteridophyta) vegetate on Fruska gora. Among them are 6 natural rarities in Serbia. The numerous genus are Equisetum (6 species) and Asplenium (7 species), and the most prevalent among them are Dryopteris filix-mas, Polystichum aculeatum and Asplenium adianthum-nigrum.
Angiosperms (Angiospermae) are the most numerous plants on Fruska gora, making more than 90 % of whole flora population. The bigest number of species have families Ranunculaceae, Apiaceae, Scrophulariaceae, Lamiaceae, Rosaceae, Fabaceae and Asteraceae (among dicotyledons ) and Liliaceae, Orchidaceae and Poaceae (among monocotyledons). Many of them, 36 dicotyledons and 27 monocotyledons, are protected species in Serbia as a natural rarities.

FOREST VEGETATION

The Fruska gora in terms of vegetation represents a forest area with varied types of climatogenous forest communities. The forests cover about 90 % of the total surface of the National Park. As a rule, they are polydominant and of great vegetation diversity.
The dominant forests are mesophillous mixed forests of sessile oak (euercus penea) and European hornbeam (Carpinus bentlus), orographically conditioned beech forests, as well as thermophilous forests of Turkey oak (euercus cerris), pubescent oak (e. pubescens) and (e. uercus farnetto).
The climatogenous type of forest in the Fruska gora is the sessile oak forest with butcher's-broom (Aculenro-euerco Carpinentat serbicum Jov.) being a Seographical variant of the oak-hornbeam phytocenosis of Serbia (euerco-Carpinerum serbicum Rud) with Mediterranean elements. The sessile oak forest with fescue (Fesruco ntontanae-euercerum perrae Jnnl) is a specific forest community and is also a climato-oro-pedogcnous type of the Fruska gora forest. A significant share of the silver linden (Tilia ronrenrosa) is a special feature of the forest phytocenoses ic the Fruska gora, conditioned by the climate in the border areas of the Pannonian Plain.
The following stands of the autochthonous forest communities have been protected as nature monuments: The stand of different oaks and European hornbeam with the silver linden, the stand of beech and silver linden with the European hornbeam, the stand of black alder and the stand of walnut. According to former, old fashioned beliefs that allochthonous species contribute to the landscape beauty, the stands of allochthonous tree species have been put under protection, as well.

HERBACEOUS VEGETATION

As opposed to the forest vegetation, the herbaceous vegetation of the Fruska gora has been significantly less studied. There are some data about the steppe vegetation, particularly of the eastern part of the Fruska gora and of the Fruska gora loess plateau. The other types of herbaceous vegetation, such as marshy phytocenoses of brook valleys and vegetation of meadows and pastures have not been studied at all, so these researches should be organized in the National Park. Habitats of the steppe vegetation have mostly been turned into plow land, and the steppe phytocenoses have been pushed out to the border areas and slopes of loess plateau.
The main steppe association of the Fruska gora is Anulo - Chrysopogonen grilli, more widespread in its eastern region and generally on the lower slopes of the eastern and northern parts of this island mountain. This phytocenosis has a rich floristic composition, with a large number of rare and endemic plants classified as natural rarities, which are characteristic species of the association: In Aula ensifolia, Sripapulcherinta, Linumflavum, Aster amellus, Dictamnus albus and many others.
The Fruska gora region is peculiar for the community of Crambo-Arremisietum campestris of a very small distribution area, with only one finding place in the eastern part of the Fruska gora. It is characterized by number of steppe relics: Cammbe rararia, I/inca herbacea, Adonis vemalis, Pulsatilla vulgaris ssp. grandis, Iris puntila, I/eronica spuria and others, so it is as a whole of a relic character.
The spread of these communities show that there is a justifiable scientific basis for the expansion of the National Park to the lower, steppe and forest-steppe areas on a loess soil.

ANIMALS

Fauna of the Fruska gora is rich in species, but the populations of certain mammals and birds are considerably reduced. There are still quite large numbers of does, boars and other game species, while deer are bred in the hunting reserves in the National Park. The Fruska gora is rich in insect species, but they have been insufficiently researched. The most important species, protected as natural rarities are: stag-beetle (Lucanus cervus), hill ant (Formica rufa) and certain representatives of butterflies (Lepidoptera).
Till today, 110 bird species have been recorded. The most important among them are: Imperial eagle (Aquila heliaca), booted eagle (Hieraaetus pennatus), woodpeckers (Dyobaes major and D. medtrs), black woodpecker (Dryocopus manius), raven (Corvus corax), song-birds: red-breasted flycatcher (Muscicapa parva), marsh titmouse (Parus palustris), garden-hammer (Embriza homrlana), etc. Some of the rare or declining mammal species are: wild cat (Felis sylvestris), badger (Meles meles), pine marten (Martes martes), least weasel (Mustela nivalis), edible dormouse (Glis glis) hazel dormouse (Muscardinus avellanarius) and several species of bats (Chiroptera).
In order to provide adequate protection of the habitats of the important representatives of ornithofauna, and in accordance with recognized values of the ornithofauna in the characteristic biocenoses of the Fruska Gora, the Papratski Do Strict Reserve, Zmajevac Research Reserve and 12 potential ornithological reserves, of total surface of 600 ha, have been protected or determined for protection.
Certain bird species - nature rarities have not been properly valued, and they are the largest birds, such as black stork, imperial eagle and the other birds of prey. The imperial eagle is the most endangered and the rarest bird in the Fruska gora and one of the rarest in Europe. At the moment there are 4 couples living in the Fruska Gora, and 10 couples of this rare species in Vojvodina. Because the imperial eagle is very sensitive to the human presence it builds its nests in the peaceful places where people rarely go. Due to that fact, it is necessary to provide adequate protection of this bird nesting areas, particularly prohibiting human presence. Very rare birds of prey need a wealth of prey, such as ground squirrel and other small mammals, and, in the case of food shortage, construction of artificial feeding places is necessary. So, from the ornithological point of view, extension of the National Park to the lower areas is also necessary, because the pastures of those areas are valuable feeding places for the important birds of prey of the Fruska gora.
Spatial protection of small mammals, as important members of forest ecosystems, has been provided in the Zmajevac Reserve. The steppe habitats, inhabited with the steppe rodents, particularly the habitats of ground squirrel (Citelus citelus) which is nature rarity, have been determined for protection. The most numerous ground squirrel colony in the pasture near the village of Jazak has been determined for protection, as well.
Besides the above mentioned, the ground squirrel habitats neat the villages of Grgeteg and Krusedol are also important for protection of this species. Protection of the Terri fauna has been provided by the forest biocenoses preservation. The conditions for survival, not only of small mammals but also of birds, could be improved by active protective measures, such as building of watering places, planting of parry bushes, building of artificial nests.
The populations of certain small mammals in the Fruska Gora are characterized by natural fluctuation of the numerosity of the forest ecosystems dominant species.
In recent years, the number of a rare and protected species of pine marten (Martes martes) has increased, and presence of jackals have been recorded, as a new species in the expansion in the Fruska gora region.

FUNGI

Fungi, as a one of three kingdoms, beside flora and fauna, is any of a group of unicellular, multicellular, or multinucleate non-photosynthetic organisms feeding on organic matter, which include moulds, yeast, mushrooms, and toadstools.
On Fruska Gora mountain, fungi are growing on pastures, meadows, in forests - everywhere where the land is not cultivated.
Edible mushrooms that can be found on Fruska Gora are suncanica (Macrolepiota procera), paprena mlecnica (Lactarius piperatus), lisicarka (Cantharellus cibarius), djurdjevaca (Tricholoma georgii), biserka (Amanita rubescens), velika djubretarka (Coprinus comatus), poljska rudnjaca (Agaricus campestris), sumska rudnjaca (Agaricus silvaticus), jablanovaca (Agrocybe aegerita), modrikaca (Lepista nuda), pravi vrganj (Boletus edulis), smcak (Morchella esculenta), mrka trubaca (Craterellus cornucopioides), skripavac (Polyporus squamosus) etc.
One should be very careful picking up the mushrooms, because there are some deadly species on Fruska Gora also - zelena pupavka (Amanita phalloides) and panterovka (Amanita pantherina). Poisonous, but not deadly, are zuta pupavka (Amanita citrina), muhara (Amanita muscaria), ludara (Boletus satanas) and bljuvara (Russula emetica).
Besides fungi mentioned above, interesting, for their beauty and shape, are also trud (Fomes fomentarius), babino uvo (Sarcoscypha coccinea), pticje gnezdo (Cyathus striatus), djavolji prsti (Xylaria polymorpha), strsak (Phallus impudicus) and mucilaginous fungi Lycogala epidendron, Fuligo septica, Stemonitis ferruginea, Arcyria denudata, Tubifera ferruginosa, Trichia scabra.

Travel to Serbia / NATURE / FRUSKA GORA