History of the Department of Zoology, Hydrobiology and General Ecology

In 1865, the Imperial Novorossiysk University was established on the basis of the Richelieu Lyceum. From the first days, the Department of Zoology, Comparative Anatomy and Physiology was created at the Natural Science Department of the Faculty of Physics and Mathematics of the Institute of Natural Sciences (INS), which consisted of several offices and academic units:

  1. Zoological office, with a laboratory and a museum.
  2. Zooanatomical office, with a laboratory.
  3. Physiological office.

At that time, professors D. A. Baikov and I. A. Markusen worked here.

The extraordinary professor of zoology D. A. Baikov worked at the above-mentioned department for only one academic year (1865/1866), although he supervised the practical work of students-zoologists until the end of 1866. He is known to us as a researcher of the estuaries around Odesa. D. A. Baikov transferred 5,421 exhibits to the museum according to the description.

Ordinary Professor of Zoology I. A. Markusen started the organization of zoological and zooanatomical offices, as well as the creation of animal collections in the museums of the Institute of Natural Sciences. Thus, thanks to his efforts, the University Council allocated a lot of money for the purchase of furniture, equipment and dishes for offices and laboratories. I. A. Markusen was also one of the first organizers of the zoological museum.

As a specialist zoologist, I. A. Markusen is known for his experiments on the study of the anatomical structure of teeth, kidneys and elements of the nervous system of various vertebrates, fauna of marine invertebrates of the Odesa Bay.

I. I. Mechnikov, who was invited by him to the post of private associate professor at the National Institute of Technology, worked on the problems of the development of the pelagic fauna of the Black Sea, for example, he discovered unknown moments in the development of the larval form of Phoronis and received new information about the pylidia of nemertines and young polychaetes.

V. I. Shmankevich, a talented student of Professor I. A. Markuzen, worked in the same zoological laboratory. It was he, during his studies at the department in 1866-1870, who began to study the fauna of Odesa estuaries. In his experiments, V. I. Shmankevich paid special attention to the influence of salinity on the organisms of small crustaceans from the Khadzhibey and Kuyalnytsky estuaries, studying their morphological features in detail. He established the ecological interrelationship of the structure and forms of crustaceans with the level of salinity and investigated it experimentally.

After full-time associate professor I. I. Mechnikov moved to the University of St. Petersburg, his friend and colleague private associate professor O. F. Stewart opened a histological laboratory in which students had the opportunity to study the peculiarities of the structure of marine animals at the micro level.

For a short period of time, all departments of the department were headed by full-time associate professor, Doctor of Medicine N. Y. Bernshtein. It was he, and thanks to the active efforts of the curator of museums I. M. Vidhalm, he managed to organize already existing collections and systematize all available preparations.

In 1870, I. I. Mechnikov returned to INS and took the position of head of the zoological office with a laboratory and museum, which he held until 1882. At that time, I. I. Mechnikov was already a well-known research embryologist, so he continued his own scientific research in this direction. I. I. Mechnikov carried out experiments in the laboratory to study the development of jellyfish, siphonophores, centipedes, sponges, and planarians. I. I. Mechnikov was also engaged in anthropological research and helped the employees of the local zemstvo to fight with pests of grain crops (Anisoplia austriaca), having studied fungal diseases of insects. This allowed him to indicate a method of combating this pest with the help of muscardina.

I. I. Mechnikov invited two scientists who were world-renowned specialists to work - O. O. Kovalevsky and I. M. Sechenov.

O. O. Kovalevskyi, a full professor of zoology at the INS, worked in Odessa from 1874 to 1890. He proved himself as an administrator: vice-rector in 1877-1878 and head of the zootomy office with a laboratory and museum in 1874-1890. As a researcher, the scientist conducted various embryological and comparative anatomical studies of animals of various systematic groups, starting from the simplest to the lower chordates.

From April 10, 1871, I. M. Sechenov was the head of the physiological office with a well-equipped laboratory. It was here that the ordinary professor conducted various studies on the study of various organs and systems in the organisms of animals with dissimilar ecology and taxonomy: reptiles (crocodiles), mammals (ungulates, predators, etc.). In particular, in 1872-1873, he studied the process of carbon dioxide absorption by blood. Together with I. I. Mechnikov, he educated very talented students who later continued the research activities of their teachers at the department, P. A. Spiro (1844-1893) and V. M. Repyakhov (1852-1905).

From the fall of 1882 to the summer of 1897, the zoological office of the INS, together with the laboratory and the museum, was headed by ordinary professor V. V. Zelenskyi. During many years of pedagogical work, he carried out a significant amount of scientific work in the direction of comparative embryology and anatomy, paleozoology, organized a zoological museum at the level of the best European universities.

In the period from 1890 to 1897, the department's zootomy office with a laboratory and a museum was headed by extraordinary professor V. M. Repyakhov. He conducted comparative embryological research: he studied the development of bryozoans, worms, as well as the fauna of molluscs from the Mediterranean. As a full professor (since 1897), he created the only zoological laboratory at the INS, where he actively implemented histological methods of studying many morphological features of animals.

After V. M. Repyakhov, professor P. M. Buchynskyi (1897—1911) worked in the department's zootomy office, museum, and laboratory. He actively studied the fauna of single-celled animals in the Black Sea and estuaries around Odesa. In 1902, the scientist managed to create a marine zoological station, which was located on the coast of the Odesa Bay of the Black Sea. The station was officially opened in September 1904. It was here that Buchynskyi and many of his students (M. V. Kudelin, M. G. Lignau, K. Kysylevich, O. Yatsenkovskyi) studied various representatives of the Black Sea marine fauna. P. M. Buchynskyi, as an excellent teacher, succeeded in opening the student biological circle of the Institute of International Studies in 1904 and was its first president until 1911. Both the station and the circle of the department of zoology were real centers of scientific research of young scientists and a platform where they made their first reports about their fruitful research in science. Dozens of future professors, corresponding members and academicians of various Academy of Sciences of the world have graduated from the walls of INS.

And from 1912 to 1916, the head of the aforementioned structures was acting of extraordinary professor, and in 1916-1920 — acting of ordinary professor D. K. Tretyakov, who in the period 1912-1919 was also the secretary of the physics and mathematics faculty. The scientist did a great deal for the development of the zootomy office during the difficult period of its development: he created a special museum of comparative anatomy at it, expanded the zootomy laboratory, enriching it with equipment for morphological, comparative anatomical and histological studies. Tretyakov performed these studies brilliantly himself and involved his students (O. R. Prendel, M. O. Zahorovsky, D. L. Rubinstein, etc.) in them. Subsequently, the professor also created a special museum of medical zoology, was the third president of the student biological circle at the Institute of Natural Sciences, and was involved in the reconstruction of a marine zoological station. From September 1918, he was also in charge of the zoological museum and an office with a laboratory. And in 1920-1921, he created and headed the Odessa Natural History Museum until 1938.

From 1897 to 1920, the zoological office with a museum and a laboratory was headed by: ordinary professor V. M. Repyakhov, then in positions from extraordinary to honored professor (1905-1918) by Y. M. Lebedynskyi. The latter continued comparative and embryological studies of animals, especially nemertines, crabs, and bryozoans. Enriched the museum with rare exhibits from various zoological companies in Europe.

Ya. M. Lebedynskyi was succeeded by acting of ordinary professor D. K. Tretyakov, who protected the zoological museum from destruction during the bloody civil war.

In 1920-1930, the university was temporarily closed. Three independent institutes were formed on its basis: Medical, Physical-Mathematical And Humanitarian-Social. The Institute of Public Education (later the Institute of Professional Education) of Odesa and the Zoological and Biological Research Institute at the All-Ukrainian Academy of Sciences were created from the last two.

Professors D. K. Tretyakov, M. G. Lingau, O. O. Brauner, and S. M. Morin taught at the institute's departments. All of them conducted their own specialized research and involved students in extensive faunal experiments in experimental marine zoology and paleozoology.

In 1930, the work of the classical university was resumed.

In 1933, the Department of Hydrobiology was separated from the Department of Zoology. Its first director was Professor M. O. Zahorovsky, an expert on estuaries, one of the initiators of biocenotic research in the Odesa Bay. After his death in 1934, the department was headed by associate professor O. K. Makarov. Under his leadership, the study of fish and benthos of the northwestern part of the Black Sea, research of estuaries was carried out.

Until 1937, there was a single department of zoology headed by academician D. K. Tretyakov, the first dean of the newly formed biological faculty in the period 1933-1939. He started ecological and morphological research at the department.

Since 1937, Odesa State University (OSU) already had two zoological departments:

  • — Department of Invertebrate Zoology, the head of which in 1937-1976 was a professor, member-correspondent of the Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, M. P. Savchuk. Members of the Department: entomologist professor O. M. Kyrychenko, associate professor S. M. Morin, etc.;
  • — Department of Vertebrate Zoology, the head of which in 1937-1941 was professor, academician of the Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, D.K. Tretyakov. Members of the Department: associate professors G. I. Konoplyov, K.T. Breneiza, M. M. Zhukov, P. I. Dmytrashko and others. The director of the Zoo Museum in 1941 was professor O. O. Browner.

The departments carried out a significant amount of scientific and pedagogical work, carried out significant research activities in the morphology and fauna laboratories of Zoobin of Odesa (“zoobin” = ZOOlogical + Biological + INstitute), the marine zoological station, the Quarantine station and other institutions of Odesa.

From 1941 to 1944, OSU was evacuated outside Odessa. Both zoological departments in the evacuation were headed by Professor M. P. Savchuk, first (1941-1942) in the city of Maikop (territory of modern Russia), and later (1942-1944) in the city of Bayram-Ali (territory of modern Turkmenistan), where the employees of the departments performed a significant amount of pedagogical work, as well as applied scientific work.

Not all teachers and students were able to leave Odesa during the evacuation. The Department of Zoology at the University of Transnistria in occupied Odesa was headed by Professor O. R. Prendel (1888-1970), and the work of the Zoological Museum was supervised by Professor S. A. Nikitin (1899-1956). It was they who managed to save many rare exhibits from the funds of the department of zoology and the museum, which could not be evacuated.

After the war, both departments continued multifaceted scientific and pedagogical work at OSU:

- Department of Invertebrates headed by M. P. Savchuk and V. D. Sevastyanov (1976-1986);

- Department of Vertebrates headed by I. I. Puzanov (1947-1971), L. F. Nazarenko (1971-1985).

In the post-war years, Professor I. I. Puzanov led complex studies of the estuaries of the North-Western Black Sea Coast. An active study of the fauna of new and old forest stands and their role in steppe biocenoses has begun. Much attention was paid to the study of bird flights, the conditions in which they occur, especially in connection with the development of the air fleet. Professor I. I. Puzanov played a major role in the creation and protection of many nature reserves and sanctuaries. This well-known scientist was a bright organizer of scientific research of the entire staff of the Department of Zoology.

A recognized ornithologist, Professor F. I. Strautman, successfully worked at the Department of Vertebrate Zoology. Professor O. P. Andriyko worked at the department for a considerable time. She was a deep scientist (parasitologist) and an excellent methodist teacher.

In 1980, Professor V. D. Sevastyanov received the State Prize for the large amount of scientific work he carried out in practical zoology and active research on the study of a separate systematic group of Acari (mites).

In 1986, the Department of Vertebrate and Invertebrate Zoology was merged with the Department of Hydrobiology. The newly created Department of Zoology and Hydrobiology is headed by Professor V. D. Sevastyanov. In 1990, a separate Department of Zoology continued under his leadership. Since 1992, the Department of Zoology has been headed by a leading specialist in contemporary ecological problems, a follower of Professor I. I. Puzanov, Doctor of Biological Sciences, Professor V. P. Stoilovskyi.

At the Department of Zoology in the late 20th - early 21st centuries, a number of talented scientists and teachers worked there. Associate professor A. I. Korzyukov developed ornithological research in the region and in Ukraine as a whole. He was a co-founder of the Azov-Black Sea Ornithological Group, the head of the Ornithological Society of Ukraine; it was he who in 1970 began conducting active research on bird migrations on Zmiiny Island.

Associate professor O. K. Furman was engaged in research on the biology of soil inhabitants. For many years, she was the deputy dean of the Biological Faculty for academic work, so she is fondly remembered by many generations of graduates of the Faculty.

Associate professor S. F. Uzhevska paid attention to the problems of plant protection, studied mites and insects that are pests. For many years, she was the head of the Parasitological and Entomological Societies of the Odesa region.

Senior teacher V. F. Mykytyuk was a specialist arachnologist. He also developed the direction of ecological studies of arthropods.

Senior teacher O. F. Krutogolova studied soil-dwelling arthropods. She worked mostly with Collembola.

Currently, associate professors O. F. Deli, D. A. Kivganov, Y. M. Oliynyk, S. Ya. Pidgorna, V. A. Trach, and K. Y. Chernychko conduct zoological research at the department. The main directions of their research are acarology, arachnology, entomology, helminthology, ornithology, morphology, nature conservation.

After the re-evacuation of the university in 1944, the Department of Hydrobiology was headed by Professor O. R. Prendel, known for his research on the malaria mosquito and the development of methods of fighting against malaria in the Northern Black Sea region, hydrobiological studies of fishing ponds in Odesa and other regions of Ukraine.

In 1955–1971, the head of the Odesa Hydrobiological Station of the Academy of Sciences of the Ukrainian SSR, professor K. O. Vinogradov, worked at the Department Department of Hydrobiology. In 1964–1965, he served as the head of the Department. On his initiative, the general course "General Hydrobiology" was introduced into the curriculum of the Biological Faculty, which is still taught to biology students. At the same time, the university purchased a vessel for scientific research at sea.

In 1965, the Department was headed by Professor F. S. Zambriborshch, ichthyologist and hydrobiologist. In 1966, he defended his doctoral thesis "Fishes of lower rivers and near-Black Sea reservoirs of the north-western part of the Black Sea". Published more than 110 scientific works. Organizer of scientific research at the Department of Aquatic Toxicology. Under his scientific guidance, 19 graduate students defended their degrees.

From 1967 to 1975, ichthyologist Professor V. Chepurnov worked at the Department. He paid a lot of attention to the study of the biology and dynamics of the number of fish in the water bodies of the Danube-Dniester interfluve and the adjacent northwestern part of the Black Sea.

In the early 80s of the last century, the department was headed by Professor M. P. Novikov, an ichthyologist with extensive experience working in the World Ocean and the Black Sea. At that time, the department was conducting research on the biology and ecology of commercial Black Sea fish.

In 1986, the Department of Hydrobiology was merged with the Department of Zoology. The joint department was headed by prof. V. D. Sevastyanov. Since 1990, the department has again become independent under the name of the Department of Hydrobiology and General Ecology.

Since 1990, the head of the Department of Hydrobiology and General Ecology was M. O. Guslyakov, associate professor of the Department of Botany, a student of Professors F. S. Zambriborshch and I. I. Pogrebnyak. Professor M. O. Guslyakov, a well-known algologist, is one of the co-authors of the atlas-determiner of diatom algae of the Black Sea.

From 2005 to 2015, the department was headed by a student of Professor F. S. Zambriborshch, associate professor V. V. Zamorov, Dean of the Biological Faculty since 2006. He defended his PhD thesis on the topic "Issues and trophic relationships of yellowfin, bigeye tuna and alepisaurus in the western part of the Indian Ocean". Combining the approaches of classical ichthyology with modern molecular genetic methods, V. V. Zamorov investigates the population structure of commercial fish species and their trophic relationships in the water bodies of the northwestern Black Sea. Develops mathematical models for estimating the number and biomass of industrial fish species in the reservoirs of Ukraine.

Since 2015, Doctor of Biological Sciences, associate professor V. O. Lobkov has been the head of the Department of Hydrobiology and General Ecology. In 2014, he defended his doctoral thesis on the topic "Intrapopulation regulation of the number of mammals using the example of the spotted ground squirrel (Spermophilus suslicus Guld.) and other species". Conducts research in the field of population ecology, dynamics of the number of mammals. Works in the field of natural science museology. Develops technological bases for breeding and maintenance of rare species of animals that are under threat of extinction.

At the Department of Hydrobiology and General Ecology in the late 20th - early 21st centuries. various studies were conducted by teachers and employees. Senior teacher A. O. Snigiryova studied the microphytobenthos of the Black Sea. Senior lecturer O. V. Chernyavskyi was engaged in the research of marine macrozoobenthos. Associate professor M. A. Vinnikova was an ichthyoplankton specialist. Assistant L. D. Babanina, who studied zooplankton in the northwestern part of the Black Sea, also worked at the department; specialist in marine zoobenthos assistant L. S. Garba; assistant V. A. Malakhovskyi - studied commercial fish of the Odesa region; senior teacher N. I. Belenkova is a specialist in zoobenthos of continental water bodies.

Associate professor M. M. Jurtubaev and junior researcher Yu. M. Jurtubaev significantly expanded the list of species composition of macrozoobenthos, studied its distribution in lakes, quantitative characteristics in the new ecological conditions that developed after the construction of dams and the reduction of the connection between the lakes and the Danube. At the same time, senior researcher G. Yu. Kolomeichenko and senior teacher O. O. Semenova assessed the toxicity of lake bottom sediments using biotesting methods.

Currently, associate professor D. B. Radionov is engaged in population genetics of fish at the department. Biology and ecology of goby fish are studied by Ph.D. associate professor I. L. Ryzhko and senior teacher Yu. V. Karavanskyi. In addition, Yu. V. Karavanskyi is a highly qualified specialist in the field of ornamental fish farming. With his active participation, aquarism courses were opened on the basis of the Faculty of Biology, where everyone can gain theoretical knowledge and master practical skills of work under the "Decorative Fish Farming" program.

It should also be noted the presence of such a unit as the Hydrobiological Station, the head of which for many years has been associate professor O. O. Kovtun, who is a diatom algae specialist. As an experienced scuba diver, he actively collects unique material on the biology of hydrobionts of the Black Sea, freshwater reservoirs, catacombs, etc.

The presence of a hydrobiological station and a registered parking base on it allows not only to carry out research by the department's specialists, but also to conduct practices, practical classes of students, and collect material for course and diploma theses.

In 2022, the Department of Zoology and the Department of Hydrobiology and General Ecology will form a single Department of Zoology, Hydrobiology and General Ecology under the leadership of Professor V. P. Stoylovsky.


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