There is an extensive nature complex with wide swamps, primeval forests, winding rivers and broad flooded meadows, few roads and sparse human settlement located north of Lake Võrtsjärv. One of the largest protected areas of Estonia – Alam-Pedja Nature Reserve (34,396 ha), which was established in 1994, is located in its characteristic part. The borders of the nature reserve run mostly on rivers – the area is bordered with the Pedja, Umbusi and Pikknurme Rivers in the north, the Laeva River in the east, the southern edge of the flooded meadow of the Emajõgi River and Sangla swamp in the south and the Pede and Põltsamaa Rivers in the west. The nature reserve is located in three counties – Tartu, Jõgeva and Viljandi.
The objective of Alam-Pedja Nature Reserve is to protect natural biodiversity by ensuring natural development of forest and swamp communities, preservation of meadow communities and maintenance of the habitats of the protected species in as large a part of the nature reserve as possible.