Stage victory for nature conservation: Ulcinj Salina becomes Nature Park

++ Saltern in Montenegro finally receives protection ++ EuroNatur Foundation has been fighting 15 years for this important migratory bird area ++

Benefit from the Nature Park designation: Flamingos in Ulcinj Salina. © Peter Sackl

Radolfzell, Ulcinj.  Good news for migratory birds: The Ulcinj Salina  in Southern Montenegro has been declared a Nature Park and thus received protected area status for the first time in history. This has been an important goal for the work of Radolfzell-based EuroNatur Foundation for 15 years already. “Perseverance finally pays off”, says EuroNatur CEO Gabriel Schwaderer. “The town council’s decision offers the opportunity to really preserve and revitalize the saline. It has been a long struggle up to this day.”

After months of debates, the town council of Ulcinj designated the saline a Nature Park on Monday, 24th of June. Local EuroNatur partners CZIP and Martin Schneider Jacoby Association (MSJA), named after a former EuroNatur executive, had been instrumental in reaching this goal.

“This victory for nature is a unique example of people struggling for birds, these incredible and fragile creatures. Against all pushback, against spatial planning, investors’ desires, industry and bare figures. However, we are well aware that this only means legal protection, while it’s still a long way to go to reach factual protection,” comments Jovana Janjušević, CZIP, on the stage victory.

One year ago, EuroNatur, BirdLife Europe and Central Asia, CZIP, and MSJA launched an international petition, because the Montenegrin government in spite of repeated promises had failed to implement any measure to protect the saline. More than 110.000 people signed the petition and public pressure on the government of Montenegro mounted.

In addition, the EU made protection of this Adriatic saltern a precondition for Montenegro’s accession. This is another result of the long-term work of conservation organisations. “We will closely track the further development,” affirms Gabriel Schwaderer. “The Nature Park logo must not become a fig leaf for the government. Now it’s about setting the course for revitalizing the saline. There has been much destruction in recent years. In addition, a management plan must be drawn up in order to preserve the area in the long term.”

Ulcinj Salina is one of the most important wetlands on the Adriatic coast and a crucial resting site for tens of thousands of water birds on their migration – but only if the saline is working.

Background information:

  • The area of Ulcinj Salina in Montenegro, which is part of the Bojana-Buna estuary, spans about 1,500 hectares. It is one of the largest salines in the Mediterranean and one of the most important resting, breeding and wintering sites for migratory birds along the eastern Adriatic coast.

Contact:
EuroNatur: Anja Arning, anja.arning(at)euronatur.org, phone +49 7732 927213
CZIP: Jovana Janjušević, jovana.czip(at)gmail.com, phone +382 20 272 051

 

 

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