Traces of anthropogenic activity of the soviet-era based on aerial photography data in the deltas of the Buguldeyka and Goloustnaya Rivers (Baikal Region)

DOI: 10.35595/2414-9179-2023-1-29-288-303

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About the Authors

Oksana V. Lunina

Institute of the Earth’s Crust SB RAS,
128, Lermontov str., Irkutsk, 664033, Irkutsk, Russia,

Anna N. Chikisheva

State Archive of the Irkutsk region,
79, Baikalskaya str., Irkutsk, 664047, Russia,

Aleksey V. Bochalgin

Irkutsk State University, Faculty of Geography,
126, Lermontov str., Irkutsk, 664033, Russia,

Anton A. Gladkov

Center for the Development of Additional Education for Children of Irkutsk Region,
9, Krasnokazachya str., Irkutsk, 664007, Russia,


In 2021 and 2022 unmanned aerial photography of the deltas of the Goloustnaya and Buguldeyka Rivers, located on the northwestern shore of Lake Baikal, were performed. Using the photogrammetric method implemented in the “Agisoft Metashape” software, ultra-high-resolution orthomosaics and digital surface models (DSM) were built. When deciphering the obtained materials, technogenic surface changes that are not associated with land development in recent decades were found. The involvement of historical data made it possible to identify traces of anthropogenic activity in the river deltas belonging to the Soviet-era of the country’s development. In the Goloustnaya River delta, which is now almost uninhabited over a larger area, and represents a steppe with islands of relict poplars, the locations of the houses of the Zarechny and Podkamenny uluses, which existed from pre-revolutionary times until 1958, were revealed. The boundaries of these settlements and agricultural land belonging to their inhabitants and collective farms were reconstructed. In both deltas, traces of large-scale logging works, unique photographs of which are presented for the first time in this article, were preserved on the surface. Places of accumulation of sunken forests on the shores of Lake Baikal and in some channels of the Goloustnaya River were revealed. On practice, the obtained data can be used in historical reconstructions, for example, when creating models of the arrangement of deltas in the Soviet-era for regional museums in modern villages and visitor centers of the Pribaikalsky National Park. The results may also be useful in environmental surveys combined with timber extraction in order to clean the bottom of water bodies.


unmanned aerial photography, mapping, anthropogenic objects, delta, Baikal


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For citation: Lunina O.V., Chikisheva A.N., Bochalgin A.V., Gladkov A.A. Traces of anthropogenic activity of the soviet-era based on aerial photography data in the deltas of the Buguldeyka and Goloustnaya Rivers (Baikal Region). InterCarto. InterGIS. GI support of sustainable development of territories: Proceedings of the International conference. Moscow: MSU, Faculty of Geography, 2023. V. 29. Part 1. P. 288–303. DOI: 10.35595/2414-9179-2023-1-29-288-303 (in Russian)