Project Category
Project Category
Project Description
Project Description
Wet meadows are shallow littoral areas with low vegetation, which are periodically flooded depending on the fluctuation of the water level. They provide shelter to many aquatic organisms, function as principal spawning grounds for some fish species and amphibians and as feeding sites for many threatened waterbirds. The existence of wet meadows is directly related to the reedbeds that surround the lake. The more they expand towards dry land, the more wet meadows decrease in surface or get degraded. In the past, many human activities at the littoral zone, such as cattle grazing and cutting and burning of reeds, contributed determinately to the creation and maintenance of extensive wet meadow surfaces. This was a way of management that stemmed from the inhabitants daily life. This situation changed drastically with the abandonment of cattle breeding near the lake and of traditional fishing techniques, which were implemented in shallow, reed-free waters. At the same time, reeds were not harvested anymore for fodder or as a construction material. Thus, any kind of intervention to prevent reed beds from expanding towards the land or the lake was radically reduced. As a result, reed beds increased in surface replacing wet meadows and the negative effects of the decrease of wet meadows appeared. Fish populations, such as the carp, decreased considerably within ten years, while many waterbirds feeding in wet meadows disappeared from the area or decreased. The Glossy Ibis and the Spoonbill are two of the species that were directly affected. This project will provide a detailed map of the sites suitable for the reestablishment of the wet meadow. Together with the vegetation map of the area it will pave the way for the application of another project in the future aiming on the active management of these sites for the establishment and latter maintenance of the wet meadows on the Albanian side of the Small Prespa. Links will be established wit the Prespa Society in Greece that has considerable experience on the wet meadow management and the GEF project active in the same area.
Our Reference Number
Our Reference Number
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