Taiga, National Geographic Society


The taiga is a forest of the cold, subarctic region. The subarctic is an area of the Northern Hemisphere that lies just south of the Arctic Circle.

Biology, Earth Science, Geography, Physical Geography

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The taiga is a forest of the cold, subarctic region. The subarctic is an area of the Northern Hemisphere that lies just south of the Arctic Circle. The taiga lies between the tundra to the north and temperate forests to the south.

Alaska, Canada, Scandinavia, and Siberia have taigas. In Russia, the world’s largest taiga stretches about 5,800 kilometers (3,600 miles), from the Pacific Ocean to the Ural Mountains. This taiga region was completely glaciated, or covered by glaciers, during the last ice age.

The soil beneath the taiga often contains permafrost—a layer of permanently frozen soil. In other areas, a layer of bedrock lies just beneath the soil. Both permafrost and rock prevent water from draining from the top layers of soil. This creates shallow bogs known as muskegs. Muskegs can look like solid ground, because they are covered with moss, short grasses, and sometimes even trees. However, the ground is actually wet and spongy.

Plants and Fungi

Taigas are thick forests. Coniferous trees, such as spruce, pine, and fir, are common. Coniferous trees have needles instead of broad leaves, and their seeds grow inside protective, woody cones. While deciduous trees of temperate forests lose their leaves in winter, conifers never lose their needles. For this reason, conifers are also called “evergreens.”

Conifers have adapted to survive the long, cold winters and short summers of the taiga. Their needles contain very little sap, which helps prevent freezing. Their dark color and triangle-shaped sides help them catch and absorb as much of the sun’s light as possible. In the taiga, tree growth is thickest beside muskegs and lakes formed by glaciers.

Taigas have few native plants besides conifers. The soil of the taiga has few nutrients. It can also freeze, making it difficult for many plants to take root. The larch is one of the only deciduous trees able to survive in the freezing northern taiga.

Instead of shrubs and flowers, mosses, lichens, and mushrooms cover the floor of a taiga. These organisms can grow directly on the ground, or have very shallow roots. They can survive in the cold, and with little water or sunlight.

Animals of the Taiga

Many kinds of animals live in the taiga. All animals have to be well-adapted to the cold. Birds native to the taiga usually migrate south during the freezing winter months. Small animals, mostly rodents, live close to the floor. Many birds of prey, such as owls and eagles, hunt these animals from the trees of the taiga.

Moose, the largest type of deer in the world, is able to live in the cold taiga. Like all deer, moose are herbivores. They favor the aquatic plants growing on the taiga’s bogs and streams.

Few large carnivorous animals live in the taiga. Bears and lynx are fairly common. The largest cat in the world, the 300-kilogram (660-pound) Siberian tiger, is a native taiga species. Siberian tigers live in a small part of eastern Siberia. They hunt moose and wild boars.

Threats to Taigas

Taiga ecosystems are threatened by direct human activity and climate change. Animals of the taiga, such as foxes or bears, have always been hunted. Their warm fur and tough skin, turned into leather, have helped people survive in harsh climates for thousands of years.

The most serious threat to taigas does not come from hunting activity, however. Civilization is dependent on sturdy buildings for homes, industry, and schools. The trees of the taiga are cut down for lumber projects, as well as paper, cardboard, and other supplies. The export of wood and paper products is one of the most economically important industries in Canada, for instance.

Clearcutting is the most popular type of logging in taigas. Clearcutting involves cutting down all the trees in a designated area. This destroys habitats for many organisms that live in and around the trees, and makes it difficult for new trees to grow. Clearcutting also increases the risk of erosion and flooding in the taiga. Without a root system to anchor it, a taiga’s soil can be blown away by wind or worn away by rain or snow. This exposes the bedrock and permafrost beneath the taiga, which does not support many forms of life.

Climate change puts taigas in danger in different ways. Warming climate contributes to a partial thawing of the permafrost. Since this water has no place to drain, more area of the taiga is taken over by muskegs. Few trees take root.

Warming temperature also changes animal habitats. It pushes native species out and attracts non-native species. Animals such as the Siberian tiger are not adapted to warm weather. Its coat is too heavy, and it stores too much body fat to thrive in a temperate habitat. Non-native insects such as the bark beetle can infest trees such as spruce. Millions of these insects bore into the bark of trees, laying eggs. The infested trees die. Bark beetle infestations can kill entire forests and thousands of hectares of taiga.

Photograph by Maria Stenzel

Tipsy Timber
In drunken forests, trees tilt in different directions. These trees arent tipsy from beer or other alcohol, but from taiga soil conditions. When permafrost layers in the soil thaw, the ground sags. This causes nearby trees, which have very shallow roots, to lean toward the depression.


Taiga tick. The lifestyle and habitat of the taiga tick

One of the most common types of ixodic ticks is an taigaacting as a highly specialized parasite various vertebrates.

It is very dangerous not only for animals, but also for humans. Than same the taiga tick is dangerous, where he lives, what kind of life he leads — anyone can find answers to these questions in our article.

Features and habitat of the taiga tick

Taiga tick is a very hygrophilous creature, therefore, it mainly lives in forest zones (in their darkened and humid areas), however, it is found both in meadows (in ravines and logs with high thick grass), and in bushes where it climbs to the lower branches.

Due to changes in the climate, characterized by its mitigation, the boundaries of the habitat of this arachnid greatly expanded. If in the first half of the 20th century. Since the taiga tick lived in Siberian forests, today it is often found in the Baltics, certain regions of Kazakhstan, Mongolia, China, Kamchatka, the Kuril Islands and southern Japan.

The structure of the taiga tick the same as all creatures of this species, it has a rather small flat body with 8 legs located on it and a head (proboscis), which has the shape of a wedge, which makes it easier to move it in the victim’s wool or feather cover.

Moreover, the female in its structure has some differences, the first of which is the color of the creature. So, for females, a dark red or brown-red color is characteristic, the color of the male is always black.

This is due to the chitin cover protecting the tick body. In females, unlike males, this cover occupies only 1/3 of the body, the rest consists of leathery folds that allow the abdomen to stretch 5-8 times.

Taiga tick

As well as female mites differ in their size, they are twice as large as males. Their size reaches 4 mm, and when filled with blood — up to 13 mm, in males it is only 2.5 mm. It is possible to see in the photo.

Despite the fact that ticks are very small and do not have visual organs, they easily survive, thanks to their ability to feel their prey, located at a distance of up to ten meters. This ability is developed due to the existing sense of touch and acute sense of smell of these creatures.

The nature and lifestyle of the taiga tick

As stated earlier taiga tick rather dangerous creature as it is encephalitis carrier and Lyme disease. It is distinguished by its inactivity, since it mainly moves on the body of the host.

And he also has patience in anticipation of the approach of the victim, which the creature waits in an active pose, characterized by movements in opposite directions of the elongated forelegs, with Haller organs on them.

These movements help to find the direction of the source of the victim’s smell, and as soon as it is nearby, the tick with the hooks and suction cups with which its legs are attached will attach to it.

In the future, the taiga tick selects a place for feeding, mainly the head or cervical region in animals and armpits, inguinal regions and scalp in humans.

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It should be noted that females are more dangerous than males. They are distinguished by their voracity and make a mink for themselves in the skin, where they remain for up to 6 days, males, however, to replenish the supply of nutrients and fluids, they suck in only for a short period of time. After saturation, taiga ticks leave their host and live in the natural environment, being a soil insect.

Nutrition of the taiga tick

Taiga tick feeds blood and tissue fluid of its carrier. After the tick has chosen a place for food, it bites its victim, while cutting through its proboscis its skin, trying to get to the blood vessels under it.

The presence of a large number of glands secreting saliva is of great importance for the nutrition of these arachnids. It performs a number of functions. For example, when bite at taiga tick the first saliva is released, which, like cement, adheres the mouth organs to the skin of its victim.

Further salivary fluid containing various biologically active substances is secreted. These substances are able to anesthetize the bite site, destroy the walls of blood vessels and surrounding tissues, and also suppress the immunity of carriers in an attempt to reject them.

Also, with the help of saliva, the tick dilutes the incoming blood and particles of destroyed tissues for easier absorption. About what period the food takes for females and males has already been discussed in our article, but in general it makes up 5-7% of the creature’s life cycle.

Reproduction and longevity of a taiga tick

In late spring, taiga ticks mate in the natural environment of their habitat, or already on the host while feeding the female. After complete saturation with the female, 1.5-2.5 thousand eggs are laid, from where in a few weeks larvae with a size of not more than 0.5 mm and six legs will appear.

For further development, the larvae feed on the blood of small animals or birds for half a week and again return to their natural habitat, where they survive molt and turn into nymphs (i.e., they move to the next phase of maturation).

Ticks in this phase differ from the previous ones in larger sizes (up to 1.5 mm) and the presence of 8 paws. At this stage, they go for the winter, after which they again hunt and this time warm-blooded animals, including humans, become objects of nutrition for further development.

Then the nymphs again undergo the process of molting, after which — the next year they turn into an adult. It follows that the life span of a taiga tick corresponds to the period of its full development and takes at least 3 years (although this process is sometimes delayed by 4-5 years).

During this period, under the influence of various natural conditions and other factors, only the strongest (only a few dozen) survive from a large number of larvae to the adult tick stage.

In summing up, I would like to remind once again that taiga tick is an pathogen most dangerous diseases (and only adults are dangerous to humans), therefore, in the summer, going to the forest, it is necessary to follow the simplest rules to ensure protection against these creatures.

They consist in regular inspection of clothes, restriction of sitting on the grass and movements in the thicket, the use of repellents, and upon returning home — a complete change of clothes and a thorough examination of the body. And also vaccination against encephalitis which is constantly made in settlements during the period of active «hunting» of ticks will not be superfluous.


Taiga tick (Siberian tick) — what kind of insect and what is its life cycle?

An ant’s life begins as an egg. Ant eggs are soft, oval, and tiny – about the size of a period at the end of a sentence. Not all eggs are destined to become adults – some are eaten by nestmates for extra nourishment.

An egg hatches into a worm-shaped larva with no eyes or legs. Larvae are eating machines that rely on adults to provide a constant supply of food. As a result, they grow rapidly, molting between sizes.

When a larva is large enough, it metamorphoses into a pupa. This is a stage of rest and reorganization. Pupae look more like adults, but their legs and antennae are folded against their bodies. They start out whitish and gradually become darker. The pupae of some species spin a cocoon for protection, while others remain uncovered, or naked.

Finally, the pupa emerges as an adult. Young adults are often lighter in color, but darken as they age. The process of development from egg to adult can take from several weeks to months, depending on the species and the environment. Did you know that ants, like all insects, are full-grown when they become adults? Their exoskeletons prevent them from getting any larger.

Furthermore, adult ants belong to one of three castes: queen, worker, or male.

Queens are females that were fed more as larvae. They are larger than workers and lay all the eggs in a colony – up to millions in some species! Queens initially have wings and fly to find a mate(s), but they tear them off before starting a new colony. A queen can live for decades under the right conditions.

Workers are females that were fed less as larvae. They do not reproduce, but perform other jobs, such as taking care of the brood, building and cleaning the nest, and gathering food. Workers are wingless and typically survive for several months.

Males have wings and fly to mate with queens. They live for only a few weeks and never help with the chores of the colony.


Ticks are even tougher and nastier than you thought

Biologists are tracking tick populations to stem tick-borne illnesses such as Lyme disease

Ticks are nasty little survivors, outlasting even dinosaurs as they resist drought, tolerate cold and go months without a meal.

They carry a host of diseases that they spread by plunging their barbed mouths into you like a grisly oil derrick. They’re hard to remove and even harder to kill.

Is your skin crawling yet?

Researchers at the University of Cincinnati are examining the tick’s defenses, looking for ways to prevent tick-borne illnesses such as Lyme disease.

Biology students and professors in UC’s McMicken College of Arts and Sciences are studying the distribution of ticks in southwest Ohio, the diseases they carry and their ability to withstand Midwest winters. Improving our understanding of these cringe-inducing parasites could help hikers, dog walkers and nature enthusiasts stay healthy.

«There are still so many things we don’t know about ticks,» said UC assistant professor Joshua Benoit, who is supervising the research. «They’re known for transmitting even more diseases than mosquitoes.»

Four species are found in southwest Ohio. They are shaped like a watermelon seed but can vary in size from a poppy seed to the head of a push pin, with eight legs and a hard, protective shell. Hungry for a meal, they climb to the tip of a blade of grass or twig and wave their extra-long, hook-tipped forelegs in the air, a behavior called «questing,» until a rabbit, deer or human brushes past. They can detect carbon dioxide from their would-be host so they are ready to latch onto fur — or denim — if given a chance.

Ticks have ferocious barbed mouthparts like ratchets that allow them to pierce deeply into the skin and remain embedded while feeding on the host’s blood. They transmit diseases through their saliva in the form of spirochetes, corkscrew-shaped bacteria that whirligig through the host’s bloodstream.

Students in UC’s Department of Biological Sciences regularly collect ticks at parks in Hamilton and Butler counties. Ticks are expensive to cultivate in a lab. They require a live host such as a mouse or rabbit. So for some studies, UC buys ticks from a lab at Oklahoma State University.

Surveillance research begins at UC’s Center for Field Studies northwest of Cincinnati next to Miami Whitewater Forest. The field station is home to other UC research projects examining the natural world from native birds to butterflies.

On a recent morning, UC postdoctoral fellow Andrew Rosendale and students Alicia Fieler, Benjamin Davies and Madisen Kimbrel dragged flags made of fleece over bushes and meadows full of summer wildflowers to collect ticks for their study.

Davies, 19, of West Chester, Ohio, and a graduate of Lakota West High School, initially found ticks revolting for the same reasons everyone does. UC’s biology labs also study cockroaches and mosquitoes.

«Among those three species, ticks were the best choice,» he said. «And working at the field station is a good way to get outside and experience nature.»

Fieler, 21, a graduate of the Cincinnati-area Oak Hills High School, wants to become a nurse practitioner. She has contributed to three published research papers on ticks so far as an undergraduate. The fieldwork at UC is giving her valuable experience both inside and outside the lab, she said.

«I’ve learned so much — lab techniques and even simple things like safety protocols and basic lab procedures, how to run assays and bring all the data together,» she said. «Having this background in science will help me with future research as well.»

Kimbrel, 20, a biology major from Monroe, Ohio, said studying a topic that has potential medical implications is a good research fit since she wants to pursue a career in medicine.

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«It’s great because you can take what you’ve learned in the classroom and apply it to the real world,» she said.

Back at professor Benoit’s biology lab, the students measure the levels of lipids, proteins and glycogen in the tick specimens. Higher fat content is an indication of good tick nutrition. And they can identify what diseases, if any, the ticks carry.

Once tick eggs hatch, the baby parasites seek a blood meal in each of their next three lifecycles: larvae, nymph and adult.

«They can transmit the disease at any stage of their life if they get infected. It’s much more common to be bitten by an adult around here. But they can pick up the disease as a larvae or a nymph as well,» UC’s Rosendale said.

And they live for up to six years.

Rosendale, co-author of numerous studies on ticks, said the goal of the research is to find ways to slow or halt the spread of disease.

«We want to find better ways to kill them by studying the mechanisms of resistance of ticks to pesticides,» he said.

Fossil evidence suggests ticks fed on dinosaurs and other Cretaceous creatures 90 million years ago. Today, ticks contract Lyme and other diseases from animals such as mice that serve as reservoirs for the bacteria.

«Ticks carry countless diseases. New ones are identified all the time,» Benoit said.

Besides Lyme, ticks in many Midwestern and Northeastern states are known to carry diseases such as anaplasmosis, ehrlichiosis and Rocky Mountain spotted fever. The bite of some lone star ticks in Kentucky and Indiana has been linked to an immune response that causes some people to become allergic to red meat, a disorder called alpha-gal.

«It’s a bizarre condition. People talk about it but it’s relatively rare,» he said.

Doctors have to be vigilant about tick-borne illnesses, even those not commonly observed in this area, said Dr. Carl J. Fichtenbaum, an infectious disease specialist at the University of Cincinnati Medical Center and the Cincinnati Veterans Affairs Medical Center.

«Lyme is uncommon here. We see a handful of cases each year,» he said. «Someone goes to Cape Cod for vacation and gets bitten by a tick and comes back with an infection.»

Typically, patients with Lyme complain of flu-like symptoms: headache, fever and achy joints or muscles, he said.

«They may get the characteristic bullseye rash around the bite, but that doesn’t happen in everyone,» he said.

Unlike mosquitoes, which transmit viruses such as West Nile or Zika in their bite, ticks transmit bacteria when they bite us, Fichtenbaum said.

«With tick-borne diseases, we don’t have immunity to bacterial infections. We can get infected over and over again. Our body isn’t capable of fending it off,» he said.

A simple course of antibiotics cures most tick-borne diseases. Fichtenbaum said surveillance efforts such as UC’s ongoing study are invaluable in helping doctors understand the likelihood of patients contracting diseases from local ticks.

«I think it’s great to sample the population of animals and insects to understand zoonosis, disease transmitted by live animals,» he said. «It’s always good if we’re keeping track of what’s out there so we know the possibilities.»

So far Lyme has not been found in the ticks Benoit’s team has collected locally. But one species, the dog tick, is a known carrier of Rocky Mountain spotted fever, which causes headache and fever and, sometimes days later, a spotted rash. It’s prevalent in Midwest and mid-Atlantic states.

Left untreated, tick-borne diseases can cause a cascade of problems from hearing loss to neurological complications.

Lyme disease affects far more people in the United States than any pathogen carried by mosquitoes in the United States.

About 30,000 cases of Lyme disease are reported each year to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The disease was observed in patients across 40 states in 2015. But this does not capture all diagnosed cases — or the many suspected cases that go undiagnosed each year, the agency said. A 2015 study by the CDC used medical-insurance claims between 2005 and 2010 to estimate that 329,000 people contract Lyme each year in the United States.

«The vast majority of research into tick-borne illness is where Lyme disease is prevalent — in the Northeast and upper Midwest,» UC’s Rosendale said. «It hasn’t received a lot of attention in Ohio because historically Lyme disease hasn’t been as common. We didn’t have the blacklegged tick here. But recently we’ve been seeing more and more of that species and so Lyme disease is becoming more of an issue.»

Anyone who has plucked a tick off a pants leg knows they are tough. But UC research is demonstrating just how hardy they are.

A UC study published in 2016 by the journal Ticks and Tick-Borne Diseases suggests that ticks have little problem surviving a typical Ohio winter. Benoit, Rosendale and their student co-authors examined the cold tolerance of the American dog tick by exposing them to temperatures as cold as -9 degrees Fahrenheit. They determined that no ticks survived more than two hours at that temperature. But ticks could withstand temperatures just above 0 degrees and most survived temperatures in the 20s for at least two weeks.

The same group co-authored another study in the Journal of Experimental Biology that found that ticks could withstand long periods of drought, enduring dehydration even when they go without food for as long as 18 weeks.

Some tick species appear to be expanding their range, which means the diseases they carry could be an emerging concern, Rosendale said.

«We expect to see more reported cases of Lyme disease,» he added. «Warmer temperatures and milder winters are allowing them to survive. We’re seeing a change in population distribution and increases in numbers as well.»

Local parks are paying close attention to the UC research. As part of the permit, UC agreed to share its surveillance findings.

«It is a public health issue. We want to be aware of what we have in our parks — if there are diseases present and how people can protect themselves,» said Zurijanne Carter, natural resources specialist for the Great Parks of Hamilton County.

The park district occasionally gets calls from residents concerned about disease after finding a tick, she said.

«The research UC is doing would go a long way toward knowing more about ticks in Ohio,» Carter said. «It’s similar research in how we monitor mosquito-borne illness.»

Benoit has published research on a variety of parasites, including tsetse flies. He traveled to Antarctica this year to study a different kind of arthropod, mites.

But ticks abide even there, in one of the most hostile and remote parts of the planet. They live off — what else? — penguins.


Agafia’s Taiga Life

In 1936, a family of Russian Old Believers journeyed deep into Siberia’s vast taiga to escape persecution and protect their way of life. The Lykovs eventually settled in the Sayan Mountains.

Two children were born during the isolation. They ended up in a dwelling in the taiga, in the Abakan river basin (Khakassia), 250 kilometres from any settlement.

In 1978 their location was discovered by a helicopter pilot, who was flying a geological group into the region. The geologists got in contact with the family, but the Lykovs decided not to leave the place.

Karp’s wife Akulina died of hunger in 1961. Three of his children died in 1981. Karp died in 1988. He is survived by his daughter Agafia Lykova who continues to live in isolation in her Abakan fastness.

Today, she is the last surviving Lykov, remaining steadfast in her seclusion. VICE crew travels to Agafia to learn about her taiga lifestyle and the encroaching influence of the outside world.

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39 Comments / User Reviews

They were escaping the Boshevik Jews who killed «Millions » of Christians in Russia !

As if life wasn’t hard enough for this beautiful old lady, without some one-legged geezer turning up uninvited, moving hiimself in, making unwanted advances and living off her generosity and the doublinig of her work.

She will be rewarded in the afterlife.

Of all the docus on this website, this one along with a few others, for some reason has a very short queue, whilst others have a very loooong to no queue. Why is that?

Can this documentary be purchased?

It would have been interesting to know how she procured food. I think I saw potatoes in the root cellar. Where did the grain come from? What did she use for illumination? Did they hunt animals for meat? Bears? There were glass windows. Where did the glass come from? Surely they didn’t carry it in with them in 1936. Since then Yerofey Sedov died in 1915, but she is still going strong as of 2017.

Humbling. I think a lot of people here may be missing the lesson of the man with the missing leg though. The lesson, according to Agafia, was that she did what was right according to her bible and because of this, what her attacker threatened her with ironically befell him. He fell into the trap he made—which is also a teaching from that book. I think if we properly understand this principle, we will all be asking each other and God for forgiveness of the bad things we’ve done. Not demonizing someone else for what they’ve done. Much less a crippled old man who has clearly already been punished for his sins. The other lesson here everybody seems to want to miss (which I can understand) is she helps this guy daily. How many of you here would have the heart of Agafia and help the very one who wronged you daily? You can’t even bring yourself to have mercy on him from your desk chair and he didn’t wrong you. She is following the Bible and blessing her enemies. That’s the clear lesson to take from this. The lesson is not that men or women are categorically evil. I will not defend this man’s evil, except to say that I doubt anyone in this forum is more virtuous than him. Humble out and seek God’s mercy for yourself and others.

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she live behind what other people do..but the style of life she had was really amazing. the good story of her was an eye opener of all. i salute for her braveness for facing the life everyday.

great doc. I’ve been waiting for Rebecca Marshall’s doc on Agafia (Forest in me) I am wondering about the goat and rooster. Were they just for a few meals? With no knowledge of science does she know that a goat must be pregnant and give birth (continually) to make milk . I saw no other goat -only a sheep. I didn’t see any hens for the rooster. Maybe they just weren’t shown. Admirable that she’s survived such hardship and had the inner awareness and fortitude to block further sexual pestering after the initial unwanted encounters. I can’t help but think how terribly different it would have been had he been able-bodied.

I literally could not take my eyes off this beautiful soul.
I feel driven to visit her.

What a beautiful soul. It shows you what is really important: the beauty of nature and a pure, simple, honest lifestyle.

Iron woman amazing

this Gody lady Agafia is precious because of her perfect character & faith in Christ despite several family tragedies that happened in her life!

..In the era of the photoshopped plastic surgeoned super made up human being. what joy to see a truly beautiful face.In her eyes do sparkle a truth we no longer recognize simply because it has vanished from our midst.Quite a startling documentary.Thank you.

was a great doc n she really deserved bleesing of god but i think govt should take her out in real world as she beard hardship now its time for rest if she dislike city she can get in some village but ii think being human she deservs all those benifits which we r having comfort peace n rest etc evn if she dont want still we should protect her as she has big knowledge how to survive or at least we can provide her some technical support each month by visiting providing food n gasoline n easy thing invention made life easy

These «benefits» would kill her. And also, comfort. You think this is what she wants? What she wants is to live rest of her life alone, without interruption from outside.

Fascinating. I stopped what I was doing so that I would not miss a frame of it!

Utterly fascinating doc!
At the beginning,The filmmaker rides in a helicopter along with a goat and a rooster to the taigas in Siberia.
The footage takes the viewer into into the great unknown; a frozen world dripping with harsh beauty and isolated magnificence, where we meet an incredibly hardy and humble woman named Agafia.
She exudes a zest for life, despite the loss of her entire family, and her endless toil to survive on her own..
I was so engrossed watching how Agafia lives that I was disapointed when the story ended.
Agafia must have incredible genes. Contact with the outside world each time made her ill, but didn’t kill her. Her siblings all died because of it. She also lived through starvation..
I’m guessing her unwavering faith,always keeping busy, and the love for her animals, keeps her sane.
I was amazed that she hadn’t murdered her predatory neighbor.(I would have). Must be her strong religious beliefs and kind nature that stopped her.

I’m impressed — this 70 something woman lifting tree trunks and carrying them around, sawing her own firewood, smiling through it all? wow lady, hats off!!

Are you sure Siberia is in the southern Russia? Check out a map or goole it first before you make a documentary maybe?

If you look at a map I think you’ll find that most of Russia lies north of Agafia’s home. She is definitely in southern Siberia.

I suppose you missed the map in the documentary clearly depicts Agafia’s home, in Siberia, in the south of Russia?

Maybe in future you should check out a map or google before you make a comment.

Fascinating. I’ll pray for this lady and hope to meet her in Heaven. Praise the Lord!

I am a bit amused at the doc slipping in the sponsor’s logo (The North Face) here and there. Just shows that Agafia has her icons and we have ours.

Somebody has to pay for the cost of making this doc including flights and posting it for free on the internet.

There are a number of documentaries from Vice that I don’t care for, but I really enjoyed this one. A great story about a beautiful lady.

A hard, solitary life of nothing but the fundamentals in a very beautiful environment, surrounded by cats and bears, and one horny old peg-legged geologist. Even out there, the sweet, honorable woman couldn’t altogether get away from a man chasing her, poor thing. I just loved listening to her talk. That language has always sounded so rich and beautiful to me, like a lush feast with a lot of sauces. There was something a little hypnotic about the whole thing, too, like listening to a clock tick in an empty house.

Go into the woods in Central Ontario in the winter after a snowfall and the silence can be un-nerving. If there is no wind, there is absolutely no sound. not a bird, distant traffic, nothing. You can sit still for a hour and not hear a thing. Total silence. The sound of a single chickadee seems amplified against this background. I would think most of us would start talking to themselves aloud just to hear something.

I said it before on this site, not too long ago, that I’ve started using this sort of imagery of a vast, frozen, empty wilderness, with mountains and the whole bit, to help me get to sleep at night. Works almost every time, too. Unless I happen to think on whether I could actually live like that! Clearly, it must just be a way of dismissing stimulation, but its been very effective. I don’t have anything like the insomnia I used to.

very interesting, i suffer from crazy insomnia, in fact i sleep every 2-3 days because of it, maybe i will try this out.

I happened on it entirely by accident about 6-8 months ago, not from a self-help book or anything. I think the trick is to find some sort of imagery that works well for you, in particular, something that you like. Could be a small tropical island, flying along in interstellar space in your own little ship, whatever makes it peaceful and quiet and gets rid of the world. 😉

Works for me. My favorite image is riding my motorcycle on a cool dark night:)

Wow, I will try that. I have wicked until 6am insomnia.

I’m afraid senor peg leg would be frozen dead if I had lived there with him sniffing around all the time. yuk. is there no peace on earth for women, anywhere!

Maybe if he’d been willing to do more for himself, and her, or as much as he could do, considering his disability, she’d have eventually taken a more favorable view of him. But I kind of doubt it, at least as regards any kind of love life.

the titles for the music are Nature and Get Free, well chosen.

What a strong woman!

Good documentary. Thanks!

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