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Mid-Excursion 4

Coastal deglacial land uplift excursion

Oulu region belongs to the globally unique Fennoscandian land uplift area. The land uplift is highest, nearly 1 cm per year at the Bothnian Gulf area. As a consequence, new land is continuously exposing from the sea, and primary mire and forest formation is an on-going phenomenon. These ‘baby mires’ and ‘baby forests’ are highly responsive ecosystems to human interventions. 

  Liminganlahti. Photo: Jari Peltomäki  Letonniemi. Photo: Päivi Virnes

The excursion will bring the participants to two sites along the coastal land uplift area: Liminganlahti Bay and its new Visitor Centre surrounded by wetlands, and Letonniemi Nature Trail, which shows early successional forests.

Liminganlahti Bay is a Ramsar site and it is the finest bird wetland area in Finland. The exceptionally wide and flat coastal meadows in Liminganlahti bay are generated by the combination of land uplift, flat topography and traditional management such as hay-cutting and cattle grazing. Traditional management of Liminganlahti Bay meadows ceased mostly in 1950´s or 1960´s, which resulted into the overgrowth of Common Reed (Phragmites australis). During the last 20 years, management by mainly cattle grazing has been restarted in several meadows to keep the shoreline open.

In Liminganlahti Bay Visitor Centre there is an exhibition called “The Eight Seasons of a Bird`s year”.

Letonniemi, which locates in the City of Oulu, represents a small nature reserve in the land uplift coast that is left under free development. Coastal meadows in Letonniemi are small and at present overgrown by Common Red and willows, but the site has representative, near-pristine  primary succession forests of land uplift coast. Letonniemi Nature Trail is about 2,5 km long. 

More information: Liminka Bay Visitor Centre and Liminganlahti


  • Duration of the excursion: 09:00–16:00
  • Total length of the bus-journey: 85 km
  • Walking: 4 km
  • Organisers: Ari Rajasärkkä/Metsähallitus and Jorma Pessa/Centre for Economic Development, Transport and the Environment, Riikka Hannila/City of Oulu, Katja Kangas/Metla, Oili Tarvainen/Metla