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Natural conditions

The landscape around Vítkov is well-preserved. Vítkov lies in a diverse terrain of Vítkov highlands, geo-morphologically belonging to Nízký Jeseník mountains. (the highest peak is Červená hora near Budišov, 759 m high). The average altitude of Vítkov is 480 m and the highest peak is Horka hill (603 m) located upon Klokočov village.

Remarkable landscape, formed by cascade and slightly folded plateaus and wide ridges is significantly divided by two important river valleys: by deep Moravice river valley (including its largest tributaries, streams Meleček and Melečský) and Odra river valley with cascade river terraces. Odra tributary, Čermná, forms an axis of a picturesque valley between Vítkov and Klokočůvek. Nearby Vítkov, there are also artificial reservoirs, e.g. ponds Pavelák I, Pavelák II, Bělidla as well as the recreational reservoire Balaton. On Moravice river, there is Kružberk reservoir supplying Opava and Ostrava regions with drinking water . The reservoir together with adjacent cottage areas, significantly affected the natural landscape character.

However, the landscape dominant is Moravice river: enbanked meanders, river terraces, in some places even canyon slopes with formations of early Carbon Culm formations are significant geomorphological phenomenons of the landscape.

The bedrock of the area is formed mostly with Culm greywacke and slates. Here should be mentioned the occurrence of Moravice grey slates and their exploitation in the past as well as at present. Huge dumps found nearby villages Zálužné, Staré Oldřůvky, Čermná, etc. is the evidence of slate extraction. Also, recent sands, gravel, loess loams collected mainly on plateaus indicate slate exploitation. Occasionally, we can find Tertiary volcanic basalt, e.g. lava extrusion near Zlatá lípa, located close to Červená hora mountain past Budišov. The Podsol soils in Vítkov region are heavy, and low-humus, suitable for cultivation of potatoes.

Regarding climate, Vítkov belongs to a mild, mid humid area with isotherm 7 °C and average annual rainfall 700 mm. Vítkov's climate, in contrast with Opava region, is more severe, colder and with a persistent snow cover.

Flora and fauna in this area is also rather interesting. The specific micro climate of Moravice valley creates favourable conditions for botanically remarkable elements. Here, thermophilic species (e.g. Vincetoxicum hirundinaria, Gallica rose), penetrating from Hradec located in Silesian lowland mix with mountain species (e.g. Alpine rose, Vetratum lobelianum, Goat's beard, Whorled Solomon's-seal etc.) descending through the foothills of Hrubý Jeseník mountains to the Moravice valley floor. Among other remarkable species here you can find a continuous vegetation of Spring snowflake (from Anna's Valley to Albrechtický mlýn mill), groups of blue flower Kidneywort on the slopes, occasionally also Martagon and Perennial honesty, etc.

Except populated areas or farmlands on the plateaus, the major part of the region is densely forested. The original primeval beech forest vegetation was cleared and replaced by the spruce monoculture for harvesting. Nowadays, the climax beech forest remains have been rarely preserved as enclaves of floriferous beech forest on the valley slopes (mixed with oaks, hornbeams and limes in lower altitudes). Beech forests are the last natural biotopes in the landscape, together with detritus and gorge forests as well as small floodplains along watercourses. A significant element of the tree layer is a fir which has been recently dying from various reasons. The remains of the above mentioned vegetations are protected in the nature reserves Nové Těchanovice, Valach and a National nature reserve Kaluža.

Among the common species representing central-European fauna can be sometimes found rare and protected species, e.g. Noble crayfish, European tree frog, Fire salamander, common European viper, Alpine shrew, Dryomys nitedula, etc. From avifauna species, the occurrence has been proved of: Black stork, Lesser spotted eagle, Common raven, Grey heron and Stock pigeon. On the top of the church tower and on he school building in Opavská street, Kestrels have their nests. Under the roofs, Common swifts can be found. In the mined out drifts of the former mines around Vítkov, e.g. Černý důl mine nearby Čermná, winterings of protected bats were found.

Thanks to the unique landscape values and rare flora and fauna species (not yet completely explored), Vítkov area is a subject to scientific interest. The ecological axis of the area with a special importance is the Moravice river valley, proclaimed Nature park in 1992.

Vítkov Municipality, one of the four authorised offices in Opava district, in compliance with Czech national Council Act no.114/1992 Coll. on Protection of Nature and the Landscape, registers significant landforms;

significant and valuable landscape elements necessary to be preserved and protected against harm and damage.

Several significant landforms are defined by law, i. e. forests, bogs, watercourses, ponds, lakes and floodplains; . The landscape elements that form its characteristic physique and contribute to its natural balance are registered by nature protection authorities, i. e. wetlands, groves, country lanes, farm woodlots, small grass areas, mineral and fossil localities, artificial and natural rock formations, but also historical parks, gardens and vegetation in settlements.

The area of which Vítkov Municipality provides administration of nature and landscape protection, includes surroundings of Vítkov, Budišov, Březová and Melč (29 cadastrals in total) covered by 74 map sheets with the scale 1/5,000.

Vítkov Municipality has been recording significant landforms since 1994. All the related work was carried out by RNDr. Alexandra Mikošková together with students of the local gymnasium school. In the course of three years, they managed to map the entire area, record the landforms into the map sheets as well as to evaluate each landform and state the purpose for its protection.

The suggested landforms are now being registered by the Municipality. Any registration intention has to be notified to the land owner or tenant who are entitled to raise objections against the intention within a defined period. After the raised objections have been discussed with the proprietor, the decision on confirming or cancelling of the registration can be made.

Any interventions leading to a potential harm or destruction of significant landforms, or weakening of their functions, shall be discussed with a nature protection authority. This regulation mainly refers to the building locations, changes of land plantation, re-parcelling, land drainage, watercourse and reservoir alterations (river banks modifications, draining and landing up of the reservoirs), etc.

Significant landforms registered so far:

Retrieved from landforms index sheets created by RNDr. Mikošková, as a part of the map documentation of significant landforms.
Groves and farm woodlots in the direction to Klokočov;
Groves near "Cabák";
Groves "Nad střelnicí";
Groups of bushes and trees, zones of low and high vegetation on the fields, meadows with occurrence of thermophilic and xeric vegetation. The vegetation helps stabilise the slopes and protect neighbouring lands against wind and other sources of erosion. This also creates important refuge and shelters for small game and useful animals. This vegetation has a soil-protective, ecological, aesthetic and landscape-forming value.

The ash alley along the road to Klokočov
A continuous line of full-grown trees, Common ash and Fraxinus excelsior monophylla. The alley is a prominent landscape-forming dominant. The vegetation protects the road against wind gusts, creates snow barriers and also indicates the road course. Also, it enhances the landscape, helps the transport and has a botanical value.

Common elm tree
An elm tree is growing in Vítkov, in front of the cafeteria in Těchanovická street. The tree is circa 20 m high, the trunk perimeter measured in 130 cm above the ground is 208 cm and its age is estimated to 90-100 years. This plant is botanically significant as elm trees more and more suffer from fungal infection, i. e. a recently widespread Dutch elm disease.

Small-leaved lime
This woody plant is growing in the town centre on a grass area opposite the Municipality building. 19 m high, the trunk perimeter 310 cm and the age is estimated to 120 years. The lime has hygienic, ecological, aesthetic and landscape-forming value.

Horse-chestnut
Horse-chestnut can be found on the left side of the road from Vítkov to Větřkovice, nearby the water tank. The tree height is circa 20 m, its trunk perimeter is 264 m. It is a prominent object that can be seen from far away. Its value is botanical, aesthetic and landscape-forming.

European ash
European ash can be found on the left side of the road from Vítkov to Větřkovice near Prostřední Dvůr. The tree is 25 m high, its trunk perimeter is 180 cm and its age is circa 90 years. There is another ash tree, 20 m high, with its trunk of 230 cm in perimeter and its age circa 80 years.
Their importance is mainly ecological, hygienic and landscape-forming.

Town Park
The park is located behind the pseudo-Gothic church and originates from the pre-war period. Originally, the park was designed in a natural style completed with retreats for relaxation. In 1970s, the park was insensitively re-styled. At present, the park is undergoing reconstruction with a special regard to the removal of dry and damaged trees and spruces attacked by bark beetle, lopping and treatment of existing trees. The intention is to plant new greenery, tidy the pond and the garden rock, build a children playground. Also, the park should be equipped with benches and waste bins. The park serves a health and recreational function.

The Neo-Gothic Church of the Virgin Mary's Ascension and St. Marcus statue in front of the church was proclaimed a National monument.

The park nearby the hospital
This park is significant from both historical and ecological point of view. Rare, mostly 200 to 250 years old woody plants grow there, e.g. European ash, Small leaved-lime, Norway maple, Scots pine, White willow, Karelian birch. The greenery provides hospitable environment for animals and plants (e. g. endangered ant species, Formica spp. live there). The park is beneficial for health and mental condition of its visitors.

Nowadays, we are preparing supporting data for the registration of the bank growth around the ponds Pavelák I and II, large groves dividing the field between Vítkov and Čermná.

The significant landforms files are stored in the Environment Department of Vítkov Municipality where you can obtain further information, if interested. Any comments, ideas or information will be much appreciated. Office days: Mondays and Wednesdays: 8 am - 12 am, 12.30 pm - 5 pm.

 

SIGNIFICANT LANDSCAPE FEATURES

Significant landforms /§3 section 1 part b) Act no. 114/1992 Coll. on Protection of Nature and the Landscape, as amended/are ecologically, geo-morphologically or aesthetically valuable landscape elements forming its distinctive physique or participating to its balance.

They are divided into two groups:
Defined by law: forests, bogs, watercourses, ponds, lakes, floodplains;
Registered by a nature protection authorities: other valuable landscape elements, e.g. wetlands, bank growths oat ponds and streams, groves, bush covered country lanes, groups of trees or individual trees in forest-free areas, parks, alleys, rock formations, etc.

Protection /§ 4 section 2 Act no. 114/1992 Coll./

Significant landforms are protected against harm and destruction. They can be used only on condition that their restoration or their balancing function is not affected. The person planning any interventions leading to a potential harm or destruction of significant landforms, or weakening of their ecological and balancing functions, must provide a binding decision of a nature protection authority. Among such interventions are mainly building locations, re-parcelling, changes of land plantation, land drainage, watercourse and reservoir alterations and mining.

Providing of binding decisions on interventions regarding registered significant landforms is in competency of appointed municipalities; binding decisions on interventions regarding significant landforms defined by law are provided by Municipalities with extended competency.

Sanctions for harmful interventions affecting significant landforms To a physical entity, the respective nature protection authority imposes a fine up to 20.000 CZK /§87 section 2 part f)/ To a legal entity or a physical entity-entrepreneur can be imposed a fine up to 100.000 CZK /§88 section 1 part i)/


Registration

The registration has been recently changed by amendment of the Act no. 168/2004 Coll. The significant landforms registration complies with general regulations on administrative procedures. The decision is issued by a nature protection authority. Parties to an action are both the proprietor of the respective land and the municipality (a district area of which is involved in the decision). On certain conditions, the community can also became a party to an action. The decision on the registration is notified to the tenant of the respective land as well as to the respective building authority. The registration may be cancelled only in case of public interest.

The decision on the significant landforms registration as well as the prospective cancellation of the registration is in competency of appointed Municipalitites.

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