Bielaje fish farm

Country/territory: Belarus

IBA Criteria met: A1, B2, B3 (2005)
For more information about IBA criteria please click here

Area: 5,451 ha

Site description
The site is a large complex of small and large fish ponds surrounded by floodplain oak woods. There are two types of ponds: on-growing (3-8 ha) and fattening (about 50 ha). Most ponds are subject to very rapid overgrowth with vegetation, mainly by sedges and cattails. Fish ponds are different from natural high-production water bodies because they form an unlimited feeding base for birds in the form of fish and the artificial foodstuffs applied for their breeding.

Key biodiversity
Bieloie fishfarm is one of the region's largest breeding centres for many fish-eating and waterbirds. The following globally threatened species breed: White-tailed Eagle Haliaeetus albicilla (1 pair) and Corncrake Crex crex (10 males). About 40-50 Black Storks Ciconia nigra stay here through the summer. But the biggest value of the IBA is that it is the sole Belarusian breeding ground of the very rare Smew Mergellus albellus (about 20 pairs).

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2023) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Bielaje fish farm. Downloaded from on 09/02/2023.