Name of author: Ilaş Armand- Viorel

Age : 16

Name of school: „Alexandru cel Bun” College

Country/District/ City: Romania/ Suceava/ Gura Humorului

Coordinating teachers: Georgeta Negrea,  Luminiţa Cîmpan



A natural geological reservation is the area in which the entire natural setting or certain geological formations, objects or phenomena are protected by law. The purpose of everything done to protect geological heritage assets is either documentary or landscaping.

From a documentary point of view, such protection activities are entitled to preserve the „vestiges” that enable the reconstruction of the geological past of earth, such as: fossils, forms that highlight certain phenomena and geological processes from the past or geological phenomena in activity. From a landscape point of view, valuable aesthetic  ensembles should be protected, this refers to natural forms and phenomena whose ”spectacular” has always awakened people’s  admiration and interest.

„Such spectacular creations give an aesthetic sense to our planet … through their own special beauty they spark amazement by giving free rein to fantasy.”

(Silviu Neguţ, The Miracles of Terra, p. 6)

Piatra Pinului Reservation




  1. Piatra Pinului: location, history and importance for science

At the crossroads with the geographical coordinates of 47° 32 ‘northern latitude and with the 25° 54’ eastern longitude „lies a ravine cloth of Bucovina Obcines, the secular settlement of Gura Humorului.” The forest road that goes up on the right of the Moldova River to the Voroneţ road is cut into the rocky massif called Piatra Pinului.

A hundred years ago, a scientist visiting these places recorded in one of his works: „Not far from the confluence of Voroneţ with the Moldova river in the woods, where the Stone of Șoim(Hawk) rises its rocky face through the trees, there is a cell dug in the rock, without a roof, but extending the rocky wall to one side. There were also a table and a bench dug there. No one knows who has blown this primitive home and who has used it. No tradition speaks anything about it. ”

The deposits of bituminous marl and disodiles from Gura Humorului contain numerous remains of fossil fish that have attracted the attention of researchers. In 1910, Sava Athanasiu mentioned the affluence of Piatra Pinului and in 1934 Mircea Pauca enlisted the deposits to mention six species of fossil fish. Research has highlighted very interesting things: the number of fish fossil species identified here has risen to 36. From a taxonomic point of view, these species belong to 16 families. Among them a new species for science, an oligocene pike and some new species for Romania.

Of special interest is the discovery, in 1973, of a new species of the genus Palaeorhynchus, named due to its special characteristics Palaeorhynchus humorensis. The discovery was made by Dumitru Grigorescu and Titus Brustur, the latter being from Gura Humorului. Today a researcher at the „Institute of Geological and Geophysical Prospects” in Bucharest, Titus Brustur discovered in 1960,  when he was a child,  the first copy of Clupea, thus awakening his passion for geology in general and for paleontology in particular. His passion was rewarded, among other things, by the discovery of this exceptional example of Palaeorhynchus humorensis.

The genus Palaeorhynchus is known in the Eocene and Oligocene deposits formed within the Mediterranean area, from Iran to Western Europe. The specimens discovered in this area have a relatively modest size of 0.80 m to 1.42 m in length. From this point of view, Palaeorhynchus humorensis can be considered the champion of European and Asian forms, measuring 1.8 m long. Discovered on top of the Kliwa sandstone horizon, the rock impression is completely preserved, which has enabled the complete restoration of fossil fish.

Restored and preserved, Palaeorhynchus humorensis is today in the collection of the palaeontology laboratory of the „University of Bucharest”. An exhaustive study, conducted within the Museum of Natural Sciences in Vienna, validates the status of a distinct species of Palaeorhynchus humorensis, as well as the rare species with reference characteristics.

Declaring Piatra Pinului a scientific reservation corresponds to a high-priority desideratum. The scientific, educational and touristic significance of such a monument need no longer be demonstrated, being part of the thesaurus of values ​​and beauties of nature. Considering that there are vestiges of ancient plants and animals in the area of ​​Piatra Pinului, it was declared a monument of nature.


The activities to protect geological reservations are extremely various. This reservation, besides the geological, paleontological and geomorphological elements, also includes protected plants and animals, many of them endemic.



  1. The presence of collectors leads to the depletion of the fossil deposits.

As long as collecting fossils involves competent persons and official collections, this activity is justified. Pseudo-scientific gathering is harmful because it leads to the degradation of the deposit without the maximum information being extracted from it.

  1. The degradation of the massif that shelters the fossil point is explained by the presence of external agents: temperature variations, freeze-thaw, irrigation.
  2. Piatra Pinului is accessible to tourists.

Since the reservation status is often violated by destructive human actions that lead to irreversible landscape disturbances, it is absolutely necessary for tourists to observe campgrounds.

  1. The most important source of pollution is the presence of cars that emit 60% of the air pollutants. The pollutant emissions of the engines have two characteristics:

– the elimination of noxes is close to the soil, leading to high concentrations in this area;

– emissions are present over the entire area and are difficult to control;


The access of cars in the reservation/ close o it must be forbidden




The outcome of this project is going to be disseminated by means of local media:

  1. the site of „Alexandru cel Bun” College(
  2. Facebook
  3. the college magazine, „Deveniri”

Imi exprim acordul ca CCDG si FEE sa utilizeze acest material in scopuri educationale
in publicatii si promovarea pe paginile de Facebook, Twitter, Flickr etc. ale Programului YRE/ Litter Less.

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