The recovery of large carnivores in Europe is a great success for nature conservation. At one third of mainland Europe, at least one species of large carnivore is present, according to an article in the scientific magazine Science that researchers from 26 countries have contributed to.
This is the first ever Science paper with authors from Albania, Bosnia-Herzegovina and Macedonia. There have been 76 researchers contributing to the article, among them three from PPNEA. They have been hardly working for 10 years monitoring and collecting data on large carnivores in Albania.
The team has been cooperating with other NGOs from neighboring countries MES in Macedonia, Finch in Kosovo, CZIP in Montenegro and international ones EuroNatur in Germany, KORA in Switzerland and NINA in Norway. All this work has been carried out in the frame of Balkan Lynx Recovery Program which is financially funded by MAVA foundation.
Steps you can take to get involved in PPNEA mission.
Bears Belong to Nature
Bear Belong to Nature, is a documentary produced by PPNEA with the suport of Alertis and Euronature.
Keeping the most majestic animal of our forests in tiny cages and in horrible conditions, is a reality that happens against legal and moral norms. All bears that we see in captivity originate from the wild, being taken as cubs after their mother had been shot by illegal hunters.
It is time to say stop to this phenomenon! PPNEA has started an awareness campaign for the long term conservation of this threatened species.
All of us can do our part by informing friends on this illegal and unacceptable practice. Join us!
Albania is really a small country, but its nature have a big heart! Until now, about 32 species of bats have been identified in Albania, out of 45 species present in Europe. In order to further develop the knowledge on Albanian Bats, PPNEA has organized a workshop on bat monitoring techniques. This has been quite a unique workshop because for the first time it brought together local and international bat researchers together with speleologists and students who are interested in bat research in the country. The workshop was followed by practical on field training in the Albanian alps caves.
We have interviewed few participants, listen what they sees as priorities in bat research in Albania. Click on the player icon below to listen to the intervies.
In order to showcase the fauna values of Albania, PPNEA invites amateurs and professionals from all over Albania and abroad to participate in the nature photo contest AlbBioBlitz. The contest opens on 5 June and closes on 7 October. The competition will have in focus the fauna diversity of our country.
Children from the local high school of Novosej willing to do something for the rehabilitation of the forest in the village, were happily engaged in the process of planting a 100 trees donated by PPNEA. Hopefully this activity will create a life – long relationships between children, trees and the environment.
Environmental Film Festival Albania
PPNEA participated in the second edition of Environmental Film Festival with the documentary "Bears Belong to Nature”, a film aiming to raise awareness on the phenomenon of bears held in captivity illegally throughout the country, which is one of the main conservation concerns for brown bears in Albania.
The bird watching and educational activities were organized at the observation tower which is built by PPNEA, FMO in Kukës and Euronatur in Germany. PPNEA experts focused on bird observation methods, identification on water birds and conservation of Kashta Wetland which serves as place of shelter and food for migratory birds.
Up to now the management of PA was always in the hands of the Directory of Forestry Services, no matter if non forested areas (like wetlands) have been in the scope of the PA. While there are clearly important developments at macro-level with an emphasis on decentralization, much needs to be done to streamline policies.
When seen from a distance Munella looks like a tooth rising up from lower surrounding hilly areas and reaching the (not so small) altitude of 1991 meters. A single isolated mountain, that even though recently is more accessible due to the newly build highway, it still remains a very remote place, hardly visited by anyone outside of the area.
Dalmatian Pelican are now vulnerable to extinction with a sharp decrease in numbers with a loss of 80% of breeding pairs since 70’s on Shkodra lake. On Albanian side of the lake tey were recorded for the last time in 1993. Meanwhile in Karavasta lagoon a loss of 90% since the 90’s has been documented.
This year the representatives of the three NGOs, MES, SPP and PPNEA have assembled for a two-day coordination meeting in Zaroshke, Albania. The main aim of the meeting was to discuss about the jointly achieved results and activities in the past period and to define the following steps.
Europes last remaining wild rivers flow throught the Balkans, providing stunning scenery and habitat to myriad plants and animals. But hundreds of dam projects threaten to do irreparable harm to the regions unique biospheres - to provide much needed electricity to the people who lives there.
PPNEA joined the winter bird monitoring session in the lakes of Greater Prespa, Lesser Prespa and Ohrid. It is worth mentioning here that on the other side of Prespa lake our PrespaNet partner the Society for Protection of Prespa (SPP) was counting the bird population in a simultaneous way so both sides of the lakes have been monitored.
Since its beginnings, the Balkan Lynx Recovery Programme (BLRP) has aimed to establish and strengthen a national monitoring network in Albania. Part of this network are people or groups, the activities of whom are linked with forest and nature, like foresters, hunters, environmental local NGO, environmentalists, etc.
The Protected Landscape Vjosë-Nartë, situated in the northern part of Vlora city represents a very important site for biodiversity conservation and tourism development, not only for the region of Vlora but for the whole country. This area is rich in water and littoral habitats and includes various landscape featuring sandy dunes, salt marshes, pine forests, islands, and wetlands.
We have always dreamed of following birds on their often very distant travels to other continents. This was our case with the first Egyptian vulture that was tagged this summer in Albania. Unfortunately the journey didn’t go well for our bird which drew in Peloponnese on its way to wintering territories.
Shebenik - Jabllanicë National Park is a true biodiversity hotspot and is recognized for a very rich flora where are found about 120 species of bee-friendly wildflowers. Taking up the challenge to promote biodiversity in the park PPNEA implemented a pilot project on development of beekeeping for alternative sources of income for local populations.
A joint vision for the largest transboundary protected area in the Balkans to date - the Shara-Koritnik-Korab mountain range - was developed in a series of workshops among stakeholders in Albania, Kosovo and Macedonia. Nature conservation, traditional activities and sustainable development will be promoted in the near future.
Having a nature-friendly attitude is a conservation priority and should be taught since childhood. At this age childrens are naturally active and curious. For them everything is a constant exploration with all their senses. Their brain develops in an extraordinary pace, aquiring thus their firs experiences whichwill serve them as a model.
The tagged juvenile was nicknamed "Mashkullora” and is the only chick fetched from one pair breeding in the region of Gjirokastra, which is one of the main Egyptian vulture territories in southern Albania. Telemetry of the Egyptian vultures in Albania provides a unique opportunity to follow them along the migration flyway.
PPNEA together with its partners organized a capacity building workshop on wildlife monitoring methods. The workshop was held on 24-30 of June 2013, in the National Park of Valbona in Albanian Alps. Following the first capacity building workshop held last year in Vevçan/MK and Librazhd/AL the workshop in Valbona is a step forward.
I was very fortunate to join PPNEA Balkan lynx team for fieldwork in northern Albania. I’m not a carnivore expert myself, but work for SPP, an NGO in Greek Prespa. Over the years the SPP has worked closely with PPNEA, but this spring our collaboration became even closer when, together with MES, we set up Prespa Net.
This resultion is a result of a workshop organized to present the key results and findings of the research project “ Illegal capturing and keeping of brown bears (Ursus arctos)“ involving the audience in discussions and subsequently have them propose the necessary measures which could lead to the elemination of this phenomenon.
On March 29th, 2013, a transboundary Agreement of Cooperation was signed between three environmental NGOs from the three countries sharing the Prespa lakes. Emphasizing that cooperation of civil society is essential for an integrated management of Prespa lakes, the NGOs came together in the village of Laimos, Greece, to officially lounch Prespa Net.