MedWetCoast Project for conservation of Wetlands and Coastal Ecosystems in the Mediterranean Region MedWetCoast Project for conservation of Wetlands and Coastal Ecosystems in the Mediterranean Region
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MWC Albania: Forest management practices and recovery measures in fireplaces identified at Pish-Poro area
Tuesday 12 July 2005, by Violeta Zuna, Eno Dodbiba

During 1995, 1996, 1997 in the nature managed reserve of Pishe-Poro was noticed many fires and considerable damages to habitats and wild-life: almost 600 ha forest was burned, and other 500 ha were accessed by fires, destroying many habitats vital for the biodiversity of this area; the biodiversity was that area was seriously threatened, the landscape also. Representative species of fauna- birds and mammals, reptiles and invertebrates were seriously affected. Their breeding and nesting sites also surfed the same.

From 1997-2004, in many lots which had suffered fires previously, naturally some sapling (Mediterranean pine trees) grew up; according to estimations of the forestry service reached at about 75% of the fired lots. Adversely, to those lots whereby there did not happened any offshoots, different atmospheric agents caused erosion-as washout of the soil humus, falling of forest trees, sand /land subsistence etc.

This becomes a great concern for the local authorities, forestry service of Vlora, NGOs and also for the community. MWC office had already identified this problem as a real threat for the ecosystem and prioritized some action to remedy the situation through emergency actions to improve it.

In this regard MWC closely cooperated with forestry service of Vlora in identifying lots to be reforested, developing the implementation plan, assessing such need, complementing actions and funding of actions matching the planning of the forestry service. This cooperation generated satisfactory results during late December 2002 - early January 2003 (first reforestation measures covering an area of 10 ha) and during mid December 2004 - mid January 2005 foresting and rehabilitating an area of 5 ha. All stakeholders, farmers, hunters, fishermen, local authorities and local community well received these measures asking for replication of this intervention in time and space aiming rehabilitation of all lots with emergency rehabilitation needs of this reserve. The rehabilitation approach applied (through reforesting and seedling) has notably improved the habitats in this area, its landscape enabling also improvement of faunistic and floristic habitats hosted in this ecosystem. Consequences of this strategy are habitat recovery (compared to 4-5 years ago), reduction of the adverse impact by atmospheric agents, recovery of the wild life in this forest ecosystem.

An added value of these activities has to be mentioned in respect of resources mobilized and building of capacities: the local community and representatives from different user groups are positive to establish kind of sites driven associations manly hunting and stockbreeding, subject to better protection of forest and pasture environment from either nature threats or from different illegal actions and infringements .

Violeta Zuna, Eno Dodbiba

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