Habrůvecká bučina National Nature Reserve

The Habrůbecká bučina NNR is located in the central part of Moravský kras PLA (The Moravian karst) on the Rudice plateau, and in the north of the Jihomoravský kraj – South Moravian Region. A national nature reserve was declared on a territory of 85.2 ha in 1975.

Habrůvecká bučina NNR covers a part of the flattened plateau and the steep slopes of a tributary of the Křtinský potok stream. The basement is of Lažánky limestone. A part of the reserve is covered with an apron of weathering products with relicts of the so-called Rudice member. Cherts are predominant in the weathering apron with the occurrence of quartz geodes and many fossils – especially echinoids and ammonites.

Stands of herb-rich and calciphilous beechwoods are the dominant vegetation types in the reserve. The predominant tree species is beech (Fagus sylvatica) with scattered small-leaved elm (Ulmus minor), sessile oak (Quercus petraea), sycamore (Acer pseudoplatanus) and Norway maple (Acer platanoides). Spring-flowering species in the herb-layer include wood anemone (Anemone nemorosa), yellow woodland anemone (Anemone ranunculoides), hepatica (Hepatica nobilis), dog’s mercury (Mercurialis perennis) and nine-leaved toothwort (Dentaria enneaphyllos). The summer aspect of the herb layer includes sweet woodruff (Galium odoratum), the sedge Carex pilosa, coralroot (Dentaria bulbifera), and protected species such as martagon lily (Lilium martagon), lesser butterfly orchid (Platanthera bifolia) and narrow-leaved helleborine (Cephalanthera longifolia). The critically-endangered ghost orchid (Epipogium aphyllum) also occurs here which is of great botanical significance.

Common species of vertebrates and invertebrates are found in the reserve. Interesting but less well known butterflies which can be found here include the the clouded magpie (Calospilos sylvata), pale November moth (Epirrita christyi) and the prominent moth Drymonia obliterata. The songs of many small passerines can be heard in the reserve. The eye-catching black stork (Ciconia nigra) also nests here.

The forest stands in the reserve are a former commercial forest. The quality stands have been preserved thanks to the former owners from the Lichtenstein noble family, who did not allow the replacement of the forests with Norway spruce monocultures. The territory of the reserve was used intensively for mineral extraction and working in Medieval times. The remnants of a small shaft furnace for burning lime (probably late Medieval in origin), a small metal works from the 9th century and remnants of Medieval charcoal kilns can all be seen on the territory.