Welcome to virtual Petola!
Petola is a story corner and photo gallery of the Suurpedot.fi-website, but also a visitor centre in Kuhmo, maintained by Metsähallitus. The Kuhmo Visitor Centre Petola with its enchanting exhibitions is worth a visit when you want to learn more about the large carnivores of Finland.
In Petola you can get to know the Finnish large carnivores: brown bear, wolf, lynx and wolverine. You will learn what they look and sound like, what their tracks look like, how they move, behave and breed and what sort of environments they live in. Petola can also offer plenty of scientific information on large carnivores.
Kuhmo Nature Center Petola. Photo: Visitor Center Petola.
The main exhibition at Kuhmo Visitor Centre Petola, "Pedot liikkeellä", is divided into several sections, where images, sounds, lights and tangible objects familiarise visitors with the large carnivores inhabiting the Finnish woods. The golden eagle is often counted as one of Finland's large carnivores, so it too has its own place in the exhibition. The Info Section also has more information about large carnivores. In addition to the display walls, this section has a lot of magazines and literature related to large carnivores. For more information, see read about Petola's program offerings (nationalparks.fi).
The Petola nature trail familiarises visitors to the behaviours and abilities of predators. The trail is packed with informative activities and visitors can compare their jumping prowess to the pounce of a lynx, try to find where a wolverine has hidden its quarry, attempt to communicate without words like wolves and compare their brawn to that of a bear. The activities are also entwined with ancient folklore concerning the birth of the animals. There are also some predator-related brain teasers for jogging the grey cells. For more information, read about Petola's activities.(nationalparks.fi).
There are four large carnivore species in Finland, all belonging to different families. The lynx is a feline, the wolf is a canine, the brown bear is from the family Ursus and the wolverine is from the family of weasels. They have been classified as large carnivores based on their size and behaviour...
The bear has the largest tracks of all of Finland's native species. The paw print of a bear's hindpaw slightly resembles the footprint of a human. In summer the bear might leave behind a destroyed anthill or tree stump. The bear's winter den is very difficult to find.
Kuhmo Visitor Centre Petola is home to Finland's large carnivores and offers a window on the Kainuu wilderness. Here you can obtain information on the brown bear, the wolf, the lynx and the wolverine. There is also plenty of information on wild forest reindeer. At Petola, you can buy unique souvenir...
Large carnivores are interesting attractions from the perspective of tourism. Often the mere fact that there are large carnivores in the area brings with it excitement and a feeling that the nature of the area is genuine and original.
Seeing a large carnivore in the wild is very rare indeed, as the animals are very shy and with their keen senses they are able to steer clear of people. Photographing or filming large carnivores is not possible without hides and feeding spots.
More than 500 nature visitors required intervention
For the first time, Metsähallitus wilderness supervision has monitored the results of its work in real time throughout the year. The new system reveals that 368 people violated the law while in nature, and 169 people were caught without necessary permits.