The first detailed study of wetland habitats in Prespa National Park

The first detailed study of wetland habitats in Prespa National Park
During the period from late spring until autumn 2019 PPNEA conducted the first detailed study of wetlands habitats in Prespa. The six months study aimed to distinguish, evaluate and map the priority habitat types according to Natura 2000, that are directly affected by the water level of the Great and Lesser Prespa Lakes. From May to September 2019, using phytosociological samples (relevés) methodology and the Braun-Blanquet method, around 62 relevés were carried out in the littoral and open water areas of the Great and Lesser Prespa Lakes. From the analysis it resulted that 24 different vegetation units are identified in the area of the Great and Lesser Prespa Lakes, of which there were found 11 associations and 13 communities (excluding agricultural, rural, ruderal and sparsely, or non-vegetated habitats).  All the habitat types found in the sampling plots were classified according to the available codes derived from the Interpretation Manual of European Union Habitats. In total, five habitat types in Annex I of the Habitats Directive were detected in the study area. From which the habitat type 91E0 * Alluvial forests with Alnus glutinosa and Fraxinus excelsior (Alno-Padion, Alnion incanae, Salicion albae) is a priority habitat. This diversity of habitat types makes Prespa National Park an important area for conservation, not just in Albania but as well in a European level. The habitat mapping study was built upon the results and experience gained in mapping the wetland habitats in the North Macedonian part of Prespa, which was conducted by the same team from Greece together with Macedonian Ecological Society (MES) and Society for Protection of Prespa (SPP), during 2018. The results from the wetland habitat mapping conducted in North Macedonia and Albania were used to create a transboundary map with priority habitat types according to Natura 2000, found in Prespa Lakes. The map is available for download  here link at PPNEAs website. These results are of great importance for PPNEA but also relevant authorities and stakeholders in Albania and Prespa basin. This study aims to support the Albanian government when developing proposals for the future establishment of Natura 2000 network, when the country will become a member of the European Union The study was carried out by a group of vegetation experts coming together from Academia and research fields from Greece and Albania- among them PPNEA researchers, student volunteers from the University Fan S.Noli in Korca, and in close collaboration with the Regional Administration of Protected Areas of Korca. PPNEA will continue its work in Prespa National Park and use the results from this study to develop and implement pilot actions for the conservation of priority habitats and species in Prespa.  Wetland habitat mapping in Prespa National Park was supported by @Prespa Ohrid Nature Trust (PONT), @EuroNatur and @Aage V.Jensen Foundation in the framework of “Strengthening NGO led Conservation in the Transboundary Prespa Basin” project.   
Related Posts
Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.Required fields are marked *