Albanian Alps

A treasury of ecological diversity in Europe

Mountain Apollo butterfly

The Mountain Apollo butterfly - symbol for biodiversity

© Herbert Bachmeier

Primordial, remote, harsh, craggy: this is the mountain world in the north of Albania and the slopes of the Albanian Alps are covered – as was once typical for large stretches of Central Europe – in tall beeches. Such beech forests are now a rarity in the whole of Europe and particularly in Albania. A restricted area as a military zone, the one-time Yugoslavian-Albanian border area was utterly remote and in this way a unique natural landscape has been able to develop. Not for nothing are the Albanian Alps a part of the Balkan Green Belt which connects habitats of unusual diversity along the line of the one-time Iron Curtain. Bears and wolves find valuable retreats and the Balkan Lynx, which is threatened with extinction, still roams the forests here. 

The pressure is mounting
Forest areas which are accessible without too much difficulty have been ruthlessly plundered for building and firewood. This is not the case in the remote Albanian Alps where today one of the last remaining large-scale stretches of Albanian beech forests can be found. Wood for building and heating is still a scarce commodity and so today these last reserves of forest appeal to human exploitation.

 

EuroNatur is committed to

  • collecting well-founded data on flora and fauna in the Albanian Alps
  • preventing the destruction of Albania's priceless forest areas
  • achieving the designation of the Albanian Alps as a National Park
  • preventing legal and illegal logging
  • developing targeted concepts for the protection of the Balkan Lynx.



What we have so far been able to achieve – a selection of important successes:

  • The foundation for the designation of the Albanian Alps as a National Park has already been laid. Together with our Albanian partner organisation PPNEA EuroNatur has collected extensive data material on flora and fauna of the area. We are on course for a National Park with an area of around 1000 square kilometres to be designated in the near future.




Partners: PPNEA (Preservation of Natural Environment in Albania), MES (Macedonian Ecological Society)

Sponsors: MAVA foundation, BfN (German Federal Agency for Nature Conservation) with funds provided by BMUB (Federal Environment Ministry), EuroNatur donors and sponsors

 

Back to overview

 

How you can help

Donation

Future needs nature. EuroNatur cares for it. Please use your possibilities to help. With your donation you will make an effective contribution to a more livable environment.

Newsletter

Twice a month, EuroNatur provides you with the latest campaign and project information about Europe's natural heritage free of charge and at first hand.

News

Challenge Corona

The corona virus is changing our lives; EuroNatur is also doing what is necessary to prevent further spread of the virus. The offices are empty, but...

Complaint against Serbia submitted to Energy Community

EuroNatur and three other NGOs submit a complaint to the Energy Community against Serbia’s failure to fully assess the environmental impacts of small...

Wild bird crime in Serbia is threatening the populations of migratory birds

++ Bird migration is already in full swing ++ Many birds are falling victim to poachers in the Balkans ++ EuroNatur and their Serbian partner...

Success for Romania’s virgin forests: a ban on felling in the Domogled National Park

The Romanian Supreme Court has forbidden any further exploitation of the ancient forests in the Domogled-Valea Cernei National Park. The judgment...

Female Balkan lynx fitted with tracking device

Our partners from the North Macedonian nature conservation organisation MES have fitted a Balkan lynx with a tracking device. The female, named...

Albanian and international science community stands up against damming the Vjosa

++ 776 scientists demand in a petition an end to the dam projects on the Vjosa in Albania ++ Scientists demand Albanian government to respect...

EU becomes active for Romania's primeval forests

EU announces legal action against Romania for illegal logging of Europe’s last natural forests.

 

Romania’s government called on to protect the forests

In a joint letter to Romania’s president, head of government and environment minister, EuroNatur and other conservation organisations are calling on...

Comment on the forest policy of the European Union

At the EU Forest Conference of 4th-5th February, the Commission vice-president, Frans Timmermans, expressed clear support for the conservation of...

More rigorous protection needed for Europe’s virgin forests

On 4 and 5 February, the EU’s future forest policy was discussed at the EU International Conference on Forests for Biodiversity and Climate in...

Shooting of bald ibis in Croatia

The northern bald ibis is one of the world’s rarest birds with only tiny remnant populations in the Middle East and along the Atlantic coast of...

New chair for EuroNatur’s Presiding Committee

++ Prof. Dr. Thomas Potthast new president of EuroNatur Foundation ++ Dr. Anna-Katharina Wöbse takes office as vice-president ++

Spotlight on nature’s diversity

Start of “Europe’s Natural Treasures 2020” international photography competition

Rebuke for Albania: Bern Convention insists on Albanian government to suspend hydropower projects on Vjosa river

The Bern Convention Standing Committee has decided to keep the case against the Albanian government in regards to the projected Pocem and Kalivac...

Planned revision of Albania’s protected areas

The Albanian government is currently preparing a reappraisal of the country’s network of protected areas. In an open letter to the government in...

By using our services, you agree that we use cookies. Data protection