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Presented project results: Protection of wild plant species and habitats of the southern and eastern Mediterranean

Vranjina_31st of October 2017._NGO Green Home presented today  the results of the project: "Protection of wild plant species and habitats of the southern and eastern Mediterranean" in the premises of NP Skadar Lake. The project  has been  implemented from 2014 to 2017. Local partners are: Montenegrin Society of Ecologists, Scout Detachment “24th November” from Bar and NGO Green Step from Ulcinj.

 

The main goal of the project was to involve civil society in the conservation of important plant areas. The focus of the project were three Important plant areas: Skadar Lake, Vrsuta  and Velika plaza. Volunteer groups were formed at the mentioned sites.

In cooperation with local partners and Phd Danka Cakovic, the monitoring of important plant species and their habitats was conducted in every area. Based on the results of the monitoring, we can findout the status of the population of certain plant species, due to which the specified sites have been designated as Important Plant Areas. Of particular importance is the population of the Montenegrin - Albanian endemic Gymnospermium scipetarum. The population of this species occupies only a small area in the territory of Montenegro (Vrsuta) and Albania. This species has not been recorded anywhere else in the world. During this project an even smaller population was recorded in the area of ​​Garač (Montenegro), which represents a great botanical value and success of the project.

 

Negative impacts or threats vary from one area to another. The main threat in Vrsuta is illegal logging, on Velika plaža it is urbanization,  and in the Skadar Lake the threat is the presence of the invasive species Amorpha fruticosa - bagremac and the absence of measures to remove it.

Invasive species are the main threat to autochthonous, native flora, which primarily reduces the biodiversity of an area, but also cause a problem when it comes to the cultivation of agricultural crops. In this regard, during the project, numerous ecological actions for the removal of invasive species have been carried out, such as: Oenothera sp. and Ambrosia artemissifolia. In the area of ​​Skadar Lake, there is a trend of spreading the Amorpha fruticosa, and it is necessary to carry out emergency removal measures.

In order to raise the awareness of the citizens about the importance of preserving Important Plant Areas, two info boards were set up on Vrsuta and Velika Plaža, three educational films about the botanical value of these sites were made, as well as numerous workshops on plant habitats in schools in Bar, Podgorica and Ulcinj.

The project is implemented in cooperation with NGO Plantlife from Great Britain and IUCN MED, and financially supported by the MAVA Foundation.

More information on: milica.kandic@greenhome.co.me