Concrete conservation actions

 

 

 

 

 

 

Action C.1: On site habitat demarcation and fencing


The purpose of this action is to demarcate selected parts of the boundaries of the targeted habitat in all locations. The demarcation of selected parts of the habitat boundaries will take into consideration the results of Action A.1 and will be carried out using "soft fencing" material (e.g. wooden posts and cordons). In Akamas, where overgrazing has been observed, fencing of selected parts of the habitat types will take place to minimize the impact of grazing. Special attention will be given to ensure that the aesthetic values of the sites are not degraded as well as links/flows between the biotic and abiotic components of the ecosystems are not hindered. Moreover, the social accessibility and subsequently, the long term sustainability of this action, will be ascertained through rural workshops and stakeholder consultations (Actions D.1 and E.5, respectively). It is envisaged that the competent authority (i.e. the Department of Forests) will maintain the fencing after the end of the project.

 

Expected results:

  • Demarcation of selected parts of the targeted habitat boundaries through "soft-fencing".
  • Fencing of selected parts of the targeted habitat at Akamas to minimize the impact of overgrazing.

DF is in charge of this Action.

 

 

 

 

Action C.2: Minimizing the impact of competitive vegetation on the natural regeneration of Juniperus spp. species


This action focuses on the minimization of the impact of competitive vegetation on the natural regeneration of the keystone species of the targeted habitat. Such an impact was preliminarily observed for Juniperus oxycedrus at Troodos by the competition of Pinus brutia, for J. excelsa at Madari-Papoutsa by P. brutia and maquis vegetation and J. phoenicea at Akamas by P. brutia and maquis vegetation.

This action will initially identify the locations where competition with co-existing vegetation is intensive. These areas will be marked with detail on a map. Moderate silvicultural treatments of the competitive vegetation in these locations will be carried out according to specific guidelines that will be developed for each location. Removal of vegetation must be done during November and December.

 

Expected results:

  • Three maps (one for each site) with the locations where competition by co-existing vegetation is very intensive.
  • Report including specific guidelines for clearings of competitive vegetation for each location.
  • Clearings of competitive vegetation at selected locations.

DF is in charge of this Action.

 

 

 

 Action C.3: Fire prevention


The Department of Forest has the overall responsibility for fire prevention in forest areas of Cyprus. Within this framework it takes all necessary actions for fire prevention within state forests. The purpose of this action, however, is to provide a series of specific measures to prevent or minimize the risk of fire which is a threat to the targeted priority habitat. Fire prevention measures will be habitat specific taking into account the special characteristics of the priority habitat within each site. Fire prevention measures will be related to the habitat and neighbouring vegetation. More specifically, fire prevention will involve the management of the habitat fuels or other material from where a fire can ignite or propagate. Fire prevention measures will include: Construction of fire breaks around the habitats, establishment of water tanks and water hydrants, additional patrolling of forest officials during summer.

 

Expected results:

  • Three maps (1:1000) identifying locations for construction of fire breaks and installation of information signs and advanced water tank systems will be created.
  • Fire breaks around habitats characterized by high fire risk vegetation will be constructed.
  • Two advanced water tank systems in Akamas.

DF is in charge of this Action.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Action C.4: Enhancement of Juniper regeneration


This is one of the core actions of the proposed project. The purpose of this action is to protect the existing natural regeneration of Junipers and to enhance, wherever needed, the existing populations. This will be achieved by:

  1. Technical interventions such as microfencing, protection of naturally emerging seedlings and saplings, sustainable control of seed/fruit predator etc.
  2. Population enrichment will be applied through sapling establishment.
  3. Seeds will be collected and seedlings will be produced
  4. Saplings will be made available by the nurseries of the Department of Forests.

Expected results:

  • Elimination of overgrazing through microfencing (30 individuals in each location)
  • Protection of 30 seedlings/saplings in each of the targeted location (Troodos - J. foetidissima and Akamas - J. phoenicea) by artificial covering of selected individuals
  • Sustainable control of seed/fruit predator in 30 individuals; evaluate the increase of the seed output.
  • Protection of 30 individuals of each location from erosion through small-scale relief modifications.
  • Reduction of the risk of wildfires through removal of dried, flammable biomass.
  • Increase the survival rate of 30 individuals seedlings/saplings of each location through moderate provision of water in extreme drought conditions.
  • Enrichment of the natural populations of the Juniperus spp. in the targeted locations by planting 100 saplings of the respective species in each location.

DF is in charge of this Action.

 

  

 

 

 

 

 

Action C.5: Restoration of the floristic composition and structure of the targeted habitat 9560*


The purpose of this action is to restore the floristic composition and structure of the Juniperus spp. habitats to a desired state at all the locations in Cyprus Republic as determined by Action A.2.

The action will include:

  1. Identification of the locations that restoration will take place and of the methodology/approach to be followed at each location.
  2. Small-scale reforestation with Juniperus excelsa, J. phonenicea, J. foetidissima and J. oxycedrus.
  3. Planting and protection of target, keystone habitat species, other than Juniperus (both woody and herbaceous).
  4. Eradication/removal of possibly invasive, alien plant species.

Expected results:

  • Report on the locations that restoration will take place and of the methodology/ approach to be followed at each location.
  • Increase of the area that is occupied by representative targeted habitat type.
  • One report on protection and enhancement of keystone species (including juniper male/female balancing).

DF is in charge of this Action.

 
 

 

Action C.6: Visitor management intervention and infrastructures (including design and installation of signs)

 

The purpose of this action is to protect the targeted habitat from the impacts of leisure activities such as tree damage, trampling and littering through visitor management interventions and infrastructures. Such impacts have been often documented within and around the targeted habitat type. Visitor's activities which could degrade the targeted habitats include trekking, camping, trampling, four-wheel driving, motorcycling and skiing. The following concrete conservation actions will be developed in detail taking into consideration the results of Action A.5 and the outcomes of the preparatory Actions A.1 to A.4:

  1. Controlling the access to the targeted habitat:
  2. Placing Rubbish bins:
  3. Placing Direction signs:

Expected results:

  • Restriction barriers are expected to restrict vehicle access to the habitat
  • 40 rubbish bins
  • 20 direction signs will be fabricated and installed.

DF is in charge of this Action. 

 

 

 

 

Action C.7: Ex situ conservation and propagation


The main aim of this action is to contribute to the long-term survival of the 9560* habitat type keystone taxa (Juniperus foetidissima, J. oxycedrus, J. phoenicea and J. excelsa) by storing and preserving a representative range of their genetic diversity at the seed bank that will be created at the Troodos Botanical Garden by the Department of Forests. Within the framework of the proposed project, seeds will be collected from the natural populations of Juniperus spp. The "Seed Collecting Manual for Wild Species" that has been prepared by the European Native Seed Conservation Network (ENSCONET) will be adopted. International standards and recommendations will also be applied for further processing and manipulation (drying, cleaning, storage and general management) of the seed lots (ENSCONET Curation Protocols & Recommendations).

Live plant material will be cultivated up to the stage of a two-year sapling and provided for the onsite enrichment and enhancement of natural populations (Actions C.4 and C.5), as well as for conservation and demonstration purposes (i.e. to Akamas and Troodos Botanical Gardens).

Expected results:

  • Protocols on seed storage, germination, growth and outplanting of Juniperus spp. will be prepared.
  • Seed lots will be stored at the seed bank that will be created at the Troodos Botanical Garden.
  • Saplings will be produced for the needs of Action C.4 as well as for establishment at the Botanical Gardens of Troodos (J. foetidissima, J. oxycedrus and J. excelsa) and Akamas (J. phoenicea).

DF is in charge of this Action.