(1894 - 1973)
Dr. Péter Beretzk, physician, later director and head physician of HSR (Hungarian State Railways) hospital in Szeged started to visit the marshlands regularly in the last days of the ancient Lake Fehér. Despite his profession he carried out his scientific work in the field of ornithology and had an important role in the exploration of the avifauna at Lake Fehér. Based on his scientific publications, educational papers and mounted bird collection we can accurately visualize the richness of the former sodic lakes avifauna.
More importantly, Dr. Péter Beretzk immediately identified the menace that endangered the unique wildlife with the establishment of the fishpond system. With the help of his pertinacious intervention almost 200 hectares of the ancient lakebed of Lake Fehér was declared protected in 1938, forming the first bird reserve in Hungary.
Sadly Dr. Péter Beretzk could not greet the formation of the Hungarian Ornithological Society, he passed away only a few months before the founding session in 1973. However ornithology life in Szeged and the whole region is still highly influenced by his actions in our days, and the grateful posterity acknowledges him as the “Father of Lake Fehér” for his often hopeless struggle to rescue the lake area.