Kuban geographers explored a new cave in the Caucasus

An as yet unexplored cave on the Lagonaki plateau was explored by speleologists from the Krasnodar regional branch of the Russian Geographical Society. The existence of a mysterious underground cavity became known from conversations with local residents, but finding the entrance to it was not so easy. The dungeon, about 100 m long, turned out to be inhabited – a large colony of bats lives here and traces of bears were found. That is why the cave was named Bear. Kuban geographers have so far decided not to disclose the exact location of the object.

“As a result of tedious combing through a very rugged terrain, we managed to find the entrance to this cave. A couple of weeks later we carried out a photo and topographic survey. The cave is ancient, left long ago by active streams, with a heavily collapsed entrance part and a rather large hall at the end. The length of the cave is not large – about 100 m, but it is very spacious, and in some areas you need good climbing skills. All the nooks and crannies from which the water that created the cave came are covered with sintered bark and clay, so that in the future the length of the cave is unlikely to increase, – said Andrey Ostapenko, head of the speleology commission of the Krasnodar regional branch of the Russian Geographical Society.

According to him, speleologists found many holes in different parts of the underground halls, which, most likely, are bear dens. Clubfoot predators also polished some passages in narrow places to a shine with their skins and paws. It is not surprising that the locals decided to call the Bear Cave.

– This speleonym is quite common, but the hunters who discovered the cave preferred it, and this is their right. Luckily for us, the bear dens are very old. At the time of visiting the cave, we did not meet them, – Andrey Ostapenko added.

Another interesting feature of the cave is the huge colony of bats. Representatives of a species listed in the Red Book of Russia, the long-winged common (Miniopterus schreibersii), winter here. The animals left behind a lot of droppings and bones.

– The anxiety factor has a very bad effect on the health of bats, especially during winter hibernation – from November to March. Therefore, we do not give more accurate bindings of the place where this cave is located, – speleologists emphasized.

Elena Ryzhkova, Alexander Zhirnov

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