Steppic Biogeographical Region
Covering less than 1% of the EU territory, the Steppic Region has only a small foothold in the European Union. But, from these modest beginnings, it develops into a vast band of vegetation that stretches out over southern Moldova, Ukraine, Russia and western Kazakhstan. It eventually continues all the way across Asia to the foothills to the Altai Mountains on the borders of Mongolia. Within the EU, the Steppic Region is found only in one Member State: Romania. It begins east of the capital city of Bucharest and incorporates the entire eastern region known as Dobrogea. It is characterised by low-lying plains and undulating hills or plateaus with an average height of 200–300 metres.
The natural steppe vegetation is composed mainly of grasses such as couch grass, feather grass and fescue as well as herbaceous plants like cinquefoil, mullein and wormwood which appear randomly amidst the tall grasses.
However, because the soils within the steppes are particularly rich in humus and consequently very fertile they have been much sought after for agriculture. Pockets of natural vegetation are now increasingly hard to come by and tend to be restricted to inaccessible places like the Macin Mountains. Located in the eastern most corner of Romania near the town of Braila, these ancient mountains are a vital refuge for the many plants and animals that are typical of the Steppic Region such as the Levant sparrowhawk Accipiter brevipes, the steppic polecat Mustela eversmannii and the Romanian hamster Mesocricetus newtoni.
- Draft Pre-scoping document for the Continental, Pannonian, Steppic and Black Sea Region (11 December 2013)
- Revised Pre-scoping document for the Continental, Pannonian, Steppic and Black Sea Region - core document (10 December 2014)
- Revised Pre-scoping document for the Continental, Pannonian, Steppic and Black Sea Region - fact sheets (10 December 2014)
- Habitats, Species and Issues Selection Document (26 February 2014)
- Habitat Selection Document 2nd draft (4 April 2014)
- 1st Steering Committee draft minutes (5 March 2014)
- Kick-off Seminar (29 June - 1 July 2015)
Sub-forum dedicated to the Steppic biogeographical region
Preparatory / Follow up actions
- Visegrad Group Workshop on Nature Conservation, Budapest (Hungary), 27 May 2014
- Follow up workshop on the Alpine process and preparing for the Continental/Pannonian/Steppic and Black Sea process, Budapest (Hungary), 21 – 23 September 2014
- How can we make the Water Framework Directive and the Birds and Habitats Directives work together?, 7 October 2015
- Follow up event of the Natura 2000 seminar for the Pannonian, Black Sea and Steppic Regions, 4 - 6 November 2015