|Management works in Amvrakikos Gulf|
Re-introduction of water buffalos for reed bed management in Amvrakikos Gulf
During the past, water buffalos were met in the wetland, opening pathways through the reed beds and helping at the maintenance of the valuable wet meadows and of the mosaic nature of the landscape.
Five (5) water buffalos, that have already reproduced, were introduced at the area of Amvrakikos from the area of Prespes, aiming at reed bed management and at the creation of several important habitats.
The re-introduction of water buffalos is a research project.
Enrichment of Rodia marsh with fresh water from Louros river in Amvrakikos Gulf
Rodia Marsh is an extensive freshwater wetland, surrounded by Louros river and once received all the water that overflowed from it.
The intensive agricultural exploitation of lowland riverside areas, combined with the lack of an integrated management plan, led to extensive land reclamation works and for this reason Louros river was confined between two anti-flood dykes. This, however, resulted in the marsh becoming isolated from the river and the presence of high salinity, distortion of the structure of natural habitats and reduction of its hydrological function.
The changes in vegetation structure and habitats degradation have led to the reduction of threatened avifauna species, such as the Ferruginous Duck (Aythya nyroca), the Bittern (Botaurus stellaris), the Dalmatian Pelican (Pelecanus crispus) and the Pygmy Cormorant (Phalacrocorax pygmeus).
There was an attempt to face up the problem of salinity increase through the ecological restoration of Rodia Marsh. The project has included the enrichment of some parts of the marsh with fresh water, through the construction of two floodgates at Petra dyke and two irrigation ditches. Water was transported from Louros river to the northwestern part of the marsh through these openings, at a controlled way.
Reforestation of the areas "Fraxia Lourou" of the Prefecture of Preveza and "Mavrovouni Hill" of the Prefecture of Arta
The decrease of tree stands in the wetlands of Amvrakikos, mainly due to the intensification of agricultural exploitation and grazing, deprive certain species of avifauna from resting and breeding places. This project dealt with trees planting in appropriate sites in order to benefit three of the six priority avifauna species, which are met in the area [Pygmy Cormorant (Phalacrocorax pygmeus), Lesser Spotted Eagle (Aquila pomarina) and Spotted Eagle (Aquila clanga)].
The project aimed at the natural regeneration of tree stands and at ensuring of perches.
In the Fraxia Lourou area, plantings mainly included the Narrow-leaved Ash Fraxinus angustifolia (F. oxycarpa), White Poplar (Populus alba) and various willows Salix sp.
In the Mavrovouni area, Valonia Oak was mainly planted (Quercus macrolepis - Q. aegilops), interspersed with individual Carob trees (Ceratonia siliqua), Judas Trees (Cercis siliquastrum), Wild Olives (Olea oleaster) and Downy Oaks (Quercus pubescens).
Artificial islets for pelicans in Amvrakikos Gulf
The islets are important and unique places for the Dalmatian Pelican (Pelecanus crispus) reproduction.
The creation of artificial islets offers alternative nesting places for the Dalmatian Pelicans and was an experimental attempt in order to deal with the problem of erosion that destroys the existing natural islets.
In the frame of this project, two new islets were created and the existing one was reinforced. This intervention increases the value of Avleri area (Tsoukalio Lagoon) which has hosted over the last two decades, the main Dalmatian Pelican colonies in Amvrakikos.