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Cradle of Cesium

Are the wild birds raising their young well?
Since 2013, I have been setting up nest boxes here and there in Nagadoro village to check the breeding status of wild birds.
Most of the nest boxes I set up were used.

The Japanese Tit and the Varied Tit use a lot of moss for their nests. The soft moss is warm and has just the right amount of moisture to keep the eggs warm.
However, it turns out that there is a big problem with the properties of moss.
It can store radioactive materials.

These photos were taken using a special method of a titmouse nest that had finished raising its young.
The areas of high radiation turn black. This shows that the moss is emitting strong radiation.

The amount of radiation in the moss remains high even now, nine years after the nuclear accident.
It takes about 20 days for a parent bird to lay eggs and hatch chicks, and another 20 days for the chicks to leave the nest.

During this time, the Japanese Tit and the Varied Tit chicks spend their lives in cradles that emit Cesium radiation.





It refers to the act of removing only radioactive substances from substances contaminated with radioactive substances, but before the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant accident, it was a word that was completely unfamiliar to the general public.

It is said that it has been a common term in the nuclear industry for some time.

The term is used, for example, in the facilities of a nuclear power plant or research institute, when equipment or equipment used in a radiation environment is contaminated with radioactive substances, the act of removing (cleaning) the radioactive substances is performed. In some cases, it is used as "decontaminating equipment". In the current corona sickness, it may be close to the act of "sterilizing" things.

Workers wear protective clothing and masks and wear special rubber gloves to decontaminate them so that they will not get dirty with radioactive substances.

To determine that radioactive material has been removed from a contaminated material, measure the radiation dose using a radiation measuring instrument. If the radiation is below the standard value, the contamination has been removed and the equipment or equipment can be used again.

Protective clothing and gloves used for decontamination are disposable.

To the last, it was an act performed in a special work performed in a special environment in a nuclear facility, and it was a word that refers to it.

Removing the radioactive material that has fallen on a large area of ​​land requires tremendous labor and a huge budget.

It can be said that it is not a level of "decontamination", but a major project comparable to wide-area civil engineering work and even national land remodeling.

This decontamination project is still underway in various parts of Fukushima Prefecture, and no clear treatment method has been established for the disposal of a large amount of soil produced by decontamination.


Hometown Nagadoro

History and current

Due to the accident at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant, a large amount of radioactive material was released into the atmosphere and flowed over Iitate Village on the northwest wind. Due to the occasional snowfall, a high concentration of radioactive material was deposited on the ground along with the snow in the Nagadoro area.

The daily lives of 281 people in 74 households were suddenly lost after that day.

Residents who evacuated to scatter had no choice but to accept the unreasonable fate.

Even if we move to a new place, we cannot easily cut off our feelings for the hometown where we were born and raised, and the days pass while we are worried.

Five years after the accident, he borrowed photographs from a large number of residents in order to convey to his children and grandchildren the memories of his life in the weathering Nagadoro.

The history of Nagadoro can be seen by arranging the photographs by era. When I looked at the photographs one by one in more detail, the identity of the climate of Nagadoro emerged.


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