28 August 2008The LIFE Nature project (Preservation of the heathlands, peatlands and bats of the Montselgues plateau - LIFE05 NAT/F/000135) beneficiary, Montselgues territory, would like to invite managers of Natura 2000 sites in each of the Member States of the EU to share their experience in biodiversity conservation actions. This can concern experience in relation to current or completed actions in a particular Natura 2000 site.
The meeting will be held in the Autumn 2008. If you are interested in taking part in this event, please contact Laurence Jullian.
27 August 2008 Six male La Gomera Giant Lizards bred in captivity on the Canary Island have been released into the wild, as part of the actions of the LIFE Nature project "Programme for the recovery of Gallotia bravoana and its distribution area" (LIFE06 NAT/E/000199).
The six individuals, considered the specimens from a captive breeding programme with the best chance of survival, were released at the Los Órganos en Vallehermoso site on La Gomera. Project technicians are optimistic that the adaptation capacity of the species will lead to the establishment of viable new lizard populations on the island.
The story of the La Gomera Giant Lizard (Gallotia bravoana) is a remarkable one: the species was thought extinct for 500 years, until the shock discovery of a few specimens by Spanish biologists in 1999. The mostly herbiverous lizard, which measures up to half a metre in length, is one of the most endangered reptiles in the world, with a population of just100 individuals. With its habitat very close to tourist centres and agricultural areas, and under threat from feral cats, the lizard was in danger of returning to the list of extinct species. Thankfully, an extremely successful series of LIFE projects has staunched the possibility of the animal disappearing forever. The first of these projects, " Recovery plan for the giant lizard of La Gomera" (LIFE02 NAT/E/008614), featured a captive breeding programme that has helped the Giant Lizard population on the island to double since 2001 (61 lizards in captivity). Now, the first captive lizards have been reintroduced into the wild by the successor project (LIFE06 NAT/E/000199). We wish them well.
For more information, visit the website of the previous project (LIFE02 NAT/E/008614).
25 August 2008 Coasts, seas & fisheries is the latest subject to be presented in the LIFE thematic section. This new thematic area brings together all information on LIFE projects supporting the implementation of EU marine, coastal and water policies. This includes a full list of projects, divided into different sub-themes such as: preserving and protecting marine species and habitats; prudent use of marine goods and services; enhancing knowledge of the marine environment; and shipping.
A selection of LIFE project videos is also available, as well as relevant LIFE programme publications, LIFE project publications and features form LIFEnews.
The final subject area in the thematic section, “Grasslands, scrubland & bogs” will be published in the coming weeks.
21 August 2008 A publication featuring the 21 best LIFE Environment projects in 2007-2008, including the top five or "best of the best (BoB)" projects is now available online. The brochure tells the story of each of the 21 outstanding projects, which were selected by the Member State representatives on the LIFE committee and the European Commission. Projects were selected on the basis of their contribution to immediate and long-term environmental, economic and social improvements; their degree of innovation and transferability; their relevance to policy; and their cost-effectiveness.
The selected projects come from across the EU and cover all of the main themes of LIFE Environment: land-use development and planning; water management; minimising the impact of economic activities; waste management, and Integrated Product Policy.
For more details, read the Best LIFE Environment Projects 2007-2008 publication!
A shorter print version, focusing mainly on the five BoB projects, will be available soon. For the Best Project publications from previous years, please visit the LIFE Programme Publication page.
19 August 2008 From 18 - 20 May 2009, the Belgian Ministry of Defence and the Agency for Nature and Forests (ANB) will organise the second international colloquium of the DANAH LIFE project (LIFE03 NAT/B/000024), a nature project focusing on military lands in Flanders. Besides looking at the project’s results, this conference will also examine the sustainable management of NATURA 2000 designated military lands.
The organisers welcome proposals for presentations and posters that highlight local solutions and experiences, in particular with regard to: sustainable management planning and implementation; geographic information systems; dealing with public access to large natural areas; and financing after LIFE. There will also be opportunities to discuss other relevant issues concerning nature management in military areas.
Contributions or further questions are welcome by e-mail. Deadline for submission of proposals is 31 October 2008.