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BALTCOAST - Rehabilitation of the Baltic coastal lagoon habitat complex

LIFE05 NAT/D/000152


Project description   Environmental issues   Beneficiaries   Administrative data   Read more   Print   PDF version  
 

Contact details:

Project Manager: Hauke DREWS
Tel: +49 431 2109055
Fax: +49 431 2109099
Email: project@life-baltcoast.eu; drews@sn-sh.de



Project description:

Background

Coastal lagoon is a priority habitat of the EU Habitats Directive. Coastal lagoons are particularly well developed in the Baltic region. Together with various dune habitats, cliffs and stone beaches, salt meadows and various types of grasslands, the Baltic coastal lagoons form an extremely varied habitat complex, associated with high levels of biodiversity. The project focused on the most important Baltic coastal areas for breeding populations of the ruff (Philomachus pugnax) and of a distinct subspecies of dunlin (Calidris alpina schinzii), two wading bird species listed in the Birds Directive. The project area also covers many of the last Baltic strongholds for creeping marshwort (Apium repens), European green toad (Bufo viridis), natterjack toad (Bufo calamita) and avocet (Recurvirostra avosetta). Many coastal lagoons have either been destroyed already, or are still loosing their ecological distinctiveness because of hydrological changes, overgrowth, and eutrophication. The project provided an opportunity for testing and demonstrating restoration and management measures on a range of 34 Baltic coastal lagoons habitat complexes, located in Denmark, Germany, Sweden, Lithuania and Estonia.


Objectives

The overall goal of the BALTCOAST project was to contribute to securing a favourable conservation status of the Baltic coastal lagoon habitat complexes, as well as the species characteristic for its habitats in Denmark, Germany and Estonia. The project aimed to prevent the extinction of the ruff (Philomachus pugnax) and of the southern subspecies of dunlin (Calidris alpina schinzii) from the Baltic Sea region. In order to ensure the use of best practices, the project had established a reference site in Sweden and aimed to establish a strong coastal lagoon management network between the countries bordering the Baltic Sea. In order to restore the coastal lagoons, drainage trenches would be blocked. Additionally, eutrophic mud and dense reed vegetation would be removed from the lagoons. These actions would lead to the enhancement of habitat quality for wading birds and amphibians. Dry semi natural habitats would be restored by clearing overgrowth with bushes and trees including alien invasive species such as the wrinkled rose (Rosa rugosa). Appropriate grazing regimes with hardy sheep and cattle would be introduced on many areas to keep them free of overgrowth. To ensure a sustainable management, the socio-economic conditions would be taken into account while developing site management strategies. The methods for the restoration of the coastal lagoon habitat complex would be improved by co-operation between experts and managers from Denmark, Sweden, Germany, Estonia and Lithuania.


Results

The BALTCOAST project focused on the most important Baltic coastal areas for breeding populations of the ruff (Philomachus pugnax) and of a distinct subspecies of dunlin (Calidris alpina schinzii), two wading bird species listed in the Birds Directive. The project area also covered many of the last Baltic strongholds for creeping marshwort (Apium repens), European green toad (Bufo viridis) and natterjack toad (Bufo calamita). In order to restore the coastal lagoons, drainage trenches were blocked. Additionally, eutrophic mud and dense reed vegetation were removed from the lagoons. These actions have led to the enhancement of habitat quality for wading birds and amphibians. Dry semi natural habitats were restored by clearing overgrowth with bushes and trees including alien invasive species such as the wrinkled rose (Rosa rugosa). Appropriate razing regimes with hardy grazers were introduced on more than 2 800 ha to keep the area free of overgrowth. The establishment of whole-year grazing with robust cattle was one of the core activities of the project. On many sites, the establishment of winter grazing has led to a reduction of litter, dominant grass species, such as bush grass (Calamagrostis epigeios) and unwanted shrubs of invasive alien rose species (e.g. Rosa rugosa). As a result, typical species of sand dunes (Thymus vulgaris, Galium verum) and coastal meadows (various orchid species) could spread again. The changes in the vegetation of coastal meadows due to the introduction or improvement of grazing regimes have resulted in a significant increase of the habitat qualities for many meadow bird species. As a result of the project, the dunlin returned to the Saltholm (Denmark) and Teorehe (Estonia) sites. The blocking of ditches has helped to retain water in early spring and to maintain a certain water level in lagoons throughout the year. Moreover the restoration of depressions created additional temporary aquatic habitats in many coastal lagoons. These actions have created new habitats for green toad and Natternjack toad and for the ruff [e.g. in Syöstra Öland (Sweden), Ottenby (Sweden) and Saltholm (Denmark)]. Due to the international approach and the high variety of the applied restoration measures, the project has a high "demonstration value" for other projects that are focusing on coastal habitats. The project clearly shows that the establishment of a whole-year grazing regimes is a key strategy in order to put in place appropriate conservation strategies for habitats and species of coastal grasslands. Moreover, it demonstrated that the detailed analysis of the hydrological conditions on site and the re-establishment of the "natural hydrology" is crucial in order to provide the suitable abiotic conditions for a high species diversity of coastal habitats.

Further information on the project can be found in the project's layman report (see "Read more" section).


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Environmental issues addressed:

Themes

Biodiversity issues - Invasive species
Species - Birds
Habitats - Coastal
Species - Amphibians


Keywords

protected area‚  coastal area‚  restoration measure


Target EU Legislation

  • Water
  • Directive 2000/60 - Framework for Community action in the field of water policy (23.10.2000)
  • Nature protection and Biodiversity
  • Directive 79/409 - Conservation of wild birds (02.04.1979)
  • Directive 92/43 - Conservation of natural habitats and of wild fauna and flora- Habitats Directiv ...
  • Decision 93/626 - Conclusion of the Convention on Biological Diversity (25.10.1993)
  • COM(95) 189 - "Communication on the judicious use and conservation of wetlands" (12.12.1995)
  • COM(98)42 -"Communication on a European Community Biodiversity Strategy" (05.02.1998)
  • COM(2001)162 -"Biodiversity Action Plan for the conservation of natural resources (vol. I & II)" ...

Target species

 Apium repens   Bufo calamita   Bufo viridis   Calidris alpina schinzii   Philomachus pugnax   Recurvirostra avosetta   Sterna albifrons   Triturus cristatus   


Target Habitat types

  • 1150 - Coastal lagoons
  • 1220 - Perennial vegetation of stony banks
  • 1310 - Salicornia and other annuals colonizing mud and sand
  • 1630 - Boreal Baltic coastal meadows
  • 2130 - Fixed coastal dunes with herbaceous vegetation ("grey dunes")
  • 2250 - Coastal dunes with Juniperus spp.

Natura 2000 sites

SPA DK005X094 Sejrø Bugt og Nekselø
SPA DK006X083 Kyststrækningen ved Hyllekrog-Rødsand
SPA DK006X089 Præstø Fjord, Ulfshale, Nyord og Jungshoved Nor
SPA DK008X071 Sydfynske Øhav
SPA DK008Z047 Lillebælt
SPA DK00DY036 Horsens Fjord og Endelave
SPA SE0430002 Falsterbo-Foteviken
SCI SE0330174 Sydöstra Ölands sjömarker


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Beneficiaries:

Coordinator Stiftung Naturschutz Schleswig-Holstein
Type of organisation NGO-Foundation
Description The Stiftung Naturschutz Schleswig-Holstein is a regional NGO-foundation focussing on nature conservation in the state of Schleswig-Holstein. The aim of the Stiftung is to preserve biotopes and habitats. It also establishes recreation sites for nature tourism and is involved in research on large scale grazing projects.
Partners Lithuanian Fund for Nature, Lithuania Estonian Ministry of the Environment, Estonia Kihnu Strait Marine Park Foundation, Estonia NPO Põhjakonn, Estonia Kallapa Farm, Estonia Tauno Tähe, Estonia Vellinge Municipality, Sweden County Administration Board of Gotland, Sweden County Administration Board of Kalmar, Sweden Nature Artbevarande och Foto i Ale AB, Sweden Skånes Ornitologiska Forening (Ornithological Society of Scania, SKOF), Sweden South Jutland County, Denmark Fyn County, Denmark West Zealand County, Denmark Storstrøm County, Denmark Saltholm Ejerlaug, Denmark Amphi Consult, Denmark Landesamt für Natur und Umwelt Schleswig-Holstein, Germany Naturschutzbund Deutschland e. V., Germany University of Hamburg, Germany Velje Amt, Denmark

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Project reference LIFE05 NAT/D/000152
Duration 01-MAY-2005 to 31-DEC -2012
Total budget 5,685,005.00 €
EU contribution 3,403,203.00 €
Project location Schleswig-Holstein(Deutschland) Københavns amt(Danmark) Vestjællands amt(Danmark) Storstrøms amt(Danmark) Fyns amt(Danmark) Sønderjyllands amt(Danmark) Vejle amt(Danmark) Associated Estonia (EE)(Estonia Eesti) Associated Lithuania (LT)(Lithuania Lietuva) Baltic Sea Sverige (S)(Sverige)

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Read more:

Brochure "LIFE-BaltCoast" (2.190 KB)
Leaflet "Natur neu erleben – das Projekt LIFE-BaltCoast in ...
Poster "Wiederherstellung von Küstenlebensräumen entlang ...
Poster "Wiederherstellung von Dünen-Lagungen-Komplexen en ...
Poster "Rehabilitation of the Baltic Coastal Lagoon Habit ...
Project web site Project's website (DE/EN)
Publication: After-LIFE Conservation Plan After-LIFE Conservation Plan (Linaküla-S ...
Publication: After-LIFE Conservation Plan After-LIFE Conservation Plan (Planas Nem ...
Publication: After-LIFE Conservation Plan After-LIFE Conservation Plan (Saksfjed o ...
Publication: After-LIFE Conservation Plan After-LIFE Conservation Plan (Ulvshale)
Publication: After-LIFE Conservation Plan After-LIFE Conservation Plan (Saltholm)
Publication: After-LIFE Conservation Plan After-LIFE Conservation Plan (Korevlen)
Publication: After-LIFE Conservation Plan After-LIFE Conservation Plan (Store Vrøj ...
Publication: After-LIFE Conservation Plan After-LIFE Conservation Plan (Monnet)
Publication: After-LIFE Conservation Plan After-LIFE Conservation Plan (Store Egho ...
Publication: After-LIFE Conservation Plan After-LIFE Conservation Plan (Halmø)
Publication: After-LIFE Conservation Plan After-LIFE Conservation Plan (Urehoved-D ...
Publication: After-LIFE Conservation Plan After-LIFE Conservation Plan (Halk Nor)
Publication: After-LIFE Conservation Plan After-LIFE Conservation Plan (Hendelave)
Publication: After-LIFE Conservation Plan After-LIFE Conservation Plan (Hjarnø)
Publication: After-LIFE Conservation Plan After-LIFE Conservation Plan (Neustädter ...
Publication: After-LIFE Conservation Plan After-LIFE Conservation Plan (Grüner Bri ...
Publication: After-LIFE Conservation Plan After-LIFE Conservation Plan (Südwestfehm ...
Publication: After-LIFE Conservation Plan After-LIFE Conservation Plan (Eichholzni ...
Publication: After-LIFE Conservation Plan After-LIFE Conservation Plan (Weißenhäus ...
Publication: After-LIFE Conservation Plan After-LIFE Conservation Plan (Sehlendorf ...
Publication: After-LIFE Conservation Plan After-LIFE Conservation Plan (Kleiner Bi ...
Publication: After-LIFE Conservation Plan After-LIFE Conservation Plan (Schwansene ...
Publication: After-LIFE Conservation Plan After-LIFE Conservation Plan (Oehe-Schle ...
Publication: After-LIFE Conservation Plan After-LIFE Conservation Plan (Reesholm)
Publication: After-LIFE Conservation Plan After-LIFE Conservation Plan (Hjelmshove ...
Publication: After-LIFE Conservation Plan After-LIFE Conservation Plan (Sõmeri)
Publication: After-LIFE Conservation Plan After-LIFE Conservation Plan (Teorehe)
Publication: After-LIFE Conservation Plan After-LIFE Conservation Plan (“Kõrgessaa ...
Publication: After-LIFE Conservation Plan After-LIFE Conservation Plan (Högby Hamn ...
Publication: After-LIFE Conservation Plan After-LIFE Conservation Plan (Sydöstra Ö ...
Publication: After-LIFE Conservation Plan After-LIFE Conservation Plan (Ottenby Natura 2000- ...
Publication: After-LIFE Conservation Plan After-LIFE Conservation Plan (Bågø)
Publication: Case study "Evaluation of status of coastal lagoon habitat co ...
Publication: Guidelines-Manual Best practice guideline of the BaltCoast project
Publication: Layman report Layman report

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Project description   Environmental issues   Beneficiaries   Administrative data   Read more   Print   PDF version