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Pustynia Błędowska - Active conservation of priority sand habitats complex (6120, 2330) in the Natura 2000 site „Błędowska Desert”.

LIFE09 NAT/PL/000259


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Contact details:

Project Manager: Kamil WOLEK
Tel: +48 32 642 85 08 wew. 73
Fax: +48 32 642 80 52
Email: k.wolek@gmina-klucze.pl



Project description:

Background

Southern Poland hosts two non-forest habitats that are listed in Annex I of the Habitats Directive: the xeric sand calcareous grasslands (*6120) and the inland dunes with open Corynephorus and Agrostis grasslands (2330). The conservation status of both these habitats in southern Poland has been recorded as unfavourable. Some 3.9% of Polish inland dunes and 6.3% of the country’s priority sand grasslands are found within the Pustynia Błędowska Natura 2000 site. The area is well known for its desert-like landscape and provides an important biodiversity enclave in the highly urbanised Silesian region. It was previously used in part as a military training ground.


Objectives

The main objective of the Pustynia Błędowska project was to secure favourable conservation status for the largest Polish complex of xeric sand calcareous grasslands (*6120) and inland dunes with open Corynephorus and Agrostis grasslands (2330). Habitat restoration work would focus on the Pustynia Błędowska Natura 2000 site. The objective would be achieved by testing, implementing and disseminating conservation measures including the removal of trees and scrub that have overgrown much of the site. Key concrete conservation actions would include the removal of trees and scrub (mainly Scots pine Pinus sylvestris, common birch Betula verrucosa, sharp-leaf willow Salix acutifolia, and creeping willow Salix arenaria) that have overgrown much of the site.


Results

The project achieved all the foreseen objectives, clearing misfired cartridges and unexploded ordnance (3803 items in total) from 400 ha of the project area. The methods used for this action were employed for the first time on such a large scale in Poland and have real demonstration value.

Scrub and tree removal led to the restoration of a favourable conservation status on an area of 335 ha of the two target Nature 2000 habitats: the xeric sand calcareous grasslands (*6120) and the inland dunes with open Corynephorus and Agrostis grasslands (2330).

Furthermore, a detailed inventory of flora and fauna species as well as habitat types was conducted on 400 ha of the project area.

To ensure the continuation of the project results, a guide to the protection of sand grasslands was published. Moreover, the beneficiary created a Desert Information Centre that hosts a permanent interactive exhibition promoting both the natural values of the Nature 2000 site Pustynia Błędowska and achievements of the project. During the project a conference and series of workshops were organised to further spread the project results.

Additionally, the project created two informative 5 km trails: ‘the Eolian processes’ (marked red) and ‘the natural plant succession’ (marked green). The trails connect information boards about the project. Developing Pustynia Błędowska as a tourist area should be economically advantageous for the local community.

Finally, the project monitored the impact of the actions on 150 transects with up to 450 plant communities. Regular monitoring of target habitats and removal of emerging seedlings of trees and shrubs is foreseen in the project’s After-LIFE plan.

Further information on the project can be found in the project's layman report and After-LIFE Conservation Plan (see "Read more" section).


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Environmental issues addressed:

Themes

Habitats - Grasslands


Keywords

endangered species‚  protected area‚  nature conservation


Target EU Legislation

  • Nature protection and Biodiversity
  • Directive 92/43 - Conservation of natural habitats and of wild fauna and flora- Habitats Directiv ...
  • COM(2011) 244 final “Our life insurance, our natural capital: an EU biodiversity strategy to 2020 ...

Target Habitat types

  • 2330 - Inland dunes with open Corynephorus and Agrostis grasslands
  • 6120 - Xeric sand calcareous grasslands

Natura 2000 sites

SCI PLH120014 Pustynia Błędowska


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Beneficiaries:

Coordinator Gmina Klucze
Type of organisation Local authority
Description The beneficiary is the Klucze municipal authority from southern Poland.
Partners None

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Project reference LIFE09 NAT/PL/000259
Duration 01-JAN-2011 to 30-NOV -2014
Total budget 2,594,996.00 €
EU contribution 1,297,498.00 €
Project location Malopolskie(Poland Polska)

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Read more:

Project web site Project's website
Publication: After-LIFE Conservation Plan After-LIFE Conservation Plan
Publication: Layman report Layman report
Publication: Technical report Project's Final technical report

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