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Academicians

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Academician Mikhail Ye. NIKIFOROV

Mikhail Yefimovich Nikiforov (born on January 21, 1956, Navajelnia village, Dziatlava District, Grodna Region) is a biologist, zoologist and ecologist. Mikhail Nikiforov is Academician of the National Academy of Sciences of Belarus (2014; Corresponding Member since 2009), Doctor of Biological Sciences (2006), Professor (2007), liquidator of the Chernobyl accident.

Acad. Nikiforov graduated from Belarusian State University in 1978. Since 1977 he worked at the Institute of Zoology of the National Academy of Sciences of Belarus: in 1977-1984 senior laboratory assistant, 1984-1989 junior researcher, in 1992 researcher, senior researcher. Since 1992 he was the head of the laboratory of ornithology. In 1992-1995 Acad. Nikiforov was acting Scientific Secretary, in 1995-2002 Deputy Director on scientific work, in 2002-2007 Director of the Institute of Zoology of the National Academy of Sciences of Belarus. From 2007 to 2014 he occupied the position of Director General of State Scientific and Production Amalgamation “The Scientific and Practical Center of the National Academy of Sciences of Belarus for Bioresources”. Since 2014 Acad. Nikiforov has served as Academician-Secretary at the Department of Biological Sciences of the NAS of Belarus.

The focus of Acad. Nikiforov is scientific research in the field of zoology, including molecular genetic profile, ornithology, animal and phylogeography, ecology, nature conservation and sustainable use of biological resources. His main research areas are the impact of natural and anthropogenic factors, including the consequences of the Chernobyl accident, on the condition of fauna assemblages and dynamics of biological diversity; study the structure and dynamics of bird fauna, migration and territorial aggregations of birds during the Holocene and at the present stage; genetic structure of populations of vertebrate species in the area and molecular genetics aspects of faunogenesis of Central and Eastern Europe during the Holocene. Mikhail Nikiforov has described patterns and models of settlement of birds’ populations in Central Europe and Belarus in the late stages of the ice age and after its completion. He has substantiated localization of the system of refuges and refugial areas of Europe, contributed to glacial isolation and morphological differentiation of bird populations and gave rise to their resettlement after glaciation. Acad. Nikiforov performed a wide series of studies to identify factors determining changes in the number of bird species in modern conditions as a basis for the development of international and national action plans for conservation globally threatened species, proposed measures to reduce the negative impact of problematic species of birds. Research results and materials are used in the preparation of the Red Book of the Republic of Belarus, reflected in the relevant sections of the National Atlas of the Republic of Belarus, applied in preparing forecasts and national reports on the state of the environment of the Republic of Belarus, in the design of national plan of development specially protected natural areas, conceptions and schemes of formation of National ecological network and its integration into the pan-European ecological network.

Acad. Nikiforov is the organizer and leader of a new direction in the development of Belarusian zoological science — molecular zoology. With his direct assistance is formed and actively used genetic bank of wild fauna. Mikhail Ye. Nikiforov established the national center for banding and study bird migration included into the European system of banding centers. Acad. Nikiforov is the organizer of the Belarusian Ornithological Society, from 1998 to 2004 President of the public organization "APB-BirdLife Belarus", which is the representative of “BirdLife International” in Belarus. Mikhail Ye. Nikiforov is the Chairman of the Belarusian ornito-faunistic Commission, the Chairman of the editorial board of the journal "Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of Belarus. Biological Series", the Chairman of the Scientific Section of Agrarian and Biological Sciences of the Scientific Council of BRFFR, member of the NASB editorial-publishing Committee. He is also a member of the editorial boards of scientific ornithological bulletin "Subbuteo" interdepartmental bulletin "Natural Resources", the magazine "Forestry and hunting."

Acad. Nikiforov is the author of over 200 scientific works, including 10 monographs, 1 copyright certificate, 4 patents for inventions. He has supervised 8 Candidates of Biological Sciences. Acad. Nikiforov repeatedly awarded with honorable certificates of relevant ministries, the Presidium of the National Academy of Sciences of Belarus, State Inspectorate for Fauna and Flora Protection under the President of the Republic of Belarus for achievements in the professional, scientific and organizational activity.

Main Publications
1. Birds of Belarus: reference book qualifier of nests and eggs. Minsk: Vysheishaya Shkola, 1989 (in partnership with. B. V. Yaminskii, L. P. Sklyarov).
2. Birds of Europe. Field qualifier (Ed.). Warsaw: Scientific Publishing House PWN, 2000.
3. Formation and structure of Belarus avifauna. Minsk: Belaruskaya Navuka. 2008.
4. The Red Book of the Republic of Belarus. Animals: rare and endangered species of wild animals, 4th ed. Minsk: Belarusian Encyclopedia named after P. Brouka, 2015. (The main editorial board: I. M. Kachanovsky (chairman), M. E. Nikiforov, V. I. Parfenov [etc.]).

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