ETHNIKO DASIKO PARKO TROODOUS

 

Name of the project area: ETHNIKO DASIKO PARKO TROODOUS

Surface area (ha): 9009

EU protection status:

SPA NATURA 2000 Code: CY5000004

SCI  NATURA 2000 Code: CY5000004

Other protection status according to national or regional legislation:

97.56 % of the site is a National Forest Park. It includes also four Nature Reserve Areas (220 ha in total 2.44% of the site). Agios Nicolaos tis Stegis has been designated in 1985 as a World Heritage Site by UNECCO. About 98.95% of the area of the site is state forest, thus regulated and protected by the national Forest Legislation. The whole site is proposed as a Special Protection Area (SPA, Dir. 79/409 EEC).

Main land uses and ownership status of the project area:

The National Park of Troodos is a State Forest land (c 99 %) and the rest is privately owned.

Scientific description of project area:

The National Forest Park of Troodos (NFP of Troodos) is located at the centre of Troodos massif. The lowest part of NFP of Troodos with an altitude of 600 m is close to its southeast end (Saitas area) and the highest is Chionistra peak at 1952 m. The relief and the topography of Troodos massif are the main regulators of the climatic conditions of Cyprus, especially rainfall, and consequently of the water resources, both surface and groundwater, a fact also influencing the island’s flora and fauna.

The NFP of Troodos, situated almost at the centre of the Troodos Ophiolite Complex, consists of plutonic rocks, which emerged from the ocean floor as a result of tectonic activity fifteen million years ago and is characterised by smooth slopes and rounded peaks. This plutonic sequence of rocks is exposed along the periphery of Troodos NFP and consists of plagiogranite, gabbro, wehrlite, pyroxenite and dunite. Harzburgite (tectonised and serpentinised) is exposed at the highest peak and its surrounding area and also at the area of the Amiantos mine.

Precipitation at the NFP of Troodos ranges from 750 mm at the lower parts and exceeds 1000 mm at its peak. The first snowfall usually occurs in December and the last in mid April; snow cover lasts for several weeks during the coldest months. The mean daily maximum temperature of the hottest month (July) is 24.5 °C, the mean daily minimum is 15.3 °C and the mean daily is 19.9 °C. The mean daily maximum temperature of the coldest month (February) is 3.7 °C, the mean daily minimum is -2.6 °C and the mean daily is 0.5 °C.

Troodos NFP is dominated by forest ecosystems of Pinus brutia (habitat type 9540), Pinus nigra subsp. pallasiana (habitat type 9536*) and Juniperus foetidissima (habitat type 9560*) in pure or mixed formations. Juniperus foetidissima stands are restricted to the topmost slopes of Chionistra, from about 1500 m up to the highest peak.

Other notable habitat types of Troodos NFP are the serpentinophilous grasslands (62B0*), characterised mainly by local endemics, which are distributed at the highest parts of the site, on serpentine outcrops and the peat grasslands of Troodos (6460*), essentially confined to the area of Almyrolivado and Pashia Livadi picnic sites on a seasonally inundated plain.

The rest of the habitat types occurring within the site are:

  • Juniperus oxycedrus arborescent matorrals (habitat type 5211)
  • Genista fasselata scrub (habitat type 5330)
  • Phrygana (habitat type 5420)
  • Screes (habitat type 8140)
  • Riparian forests with Platanus orientalis and Alnus orientalis (habitat type 92C0)
  • Scrub and low forest vegetation with Quercus alnifolia (habitat type 9390*)

Importance of the project area for biodiversity and/or for the conservation of the species / habitat types targeted at regional, national and EU level

Troodos NFP includes 11 (Annex I, 92/43/EEC) habitat types (4 priority habitats) and is generally considered an important area for the biodiversity of Cyprus. It hosts 10 Annex II Dir. 92/43/EEC species (3 priority ones) - 5 plants, 3 mammals, 1 reptile and 1 insect - and another 272 important plant and animal species. Notably, it hosts not only the largest number of plants (about 40% of the indigenous flora), compared to any other area of Cyprus, but also the largest number of endemic plants (69 species and subspecies or 49.6%). Thus, it has been designated as one of the 13 "Plant Diversity Hot Spots" in the Mediterranean. Furthermore, 38 threatened plants (included in the Red Data Book of the Flora of Cyprus) have been recorded in the site.

In addition, Troodos NFP with 78 recorded important bird species (17 Annex I and 61 Migratory birds) has been designated as an SPA.

This site was selected for the implementation of management and conservation measures on the habitat type *9560 Endemic Mediterranean forests with Juniperus spp. and specifically forests of Juniperus foetidissima and J. oxycedrus. Habitat type (9560*=9563* J. foetidissima) is listed in the SDF with a cover of 1.09% of the site. A small stand of J. oxycedrus (tree formation) has been found recently and roughly mapped by the Department of Forests (the competent authority for the management of all main and minor state forest, including National Park Forest and Forest Nature Reserves). Before the end of the project, the Department of Environment and the Department of Forests (the competent authorities for the management of the Natura 2000 Network in Cyprus) take the responsibility to send the revised SDF to the European Commission.

Source of information :

1. Georghiou, K., Economidou, E., Legakis, A., Makris, Ch., Tsintides, T., Iezekiel, S. (Editor) Christodoulou, S. C., ENALION Environmental Management Centre, LTD, and

2. Panagiotou, Ch. 1999. “Natura 2000 standard data form for Special Protection Areas (SPA), for sites eligible for identification as Sites of Community Importance (SCI) and for Special Areas of Conservation (SAC): Ethniko Dasiko Parko Troodous”.

3. Tsintidis, T., Christodoulou, C. S., Delipetrou, P., Georghiou, K. (Eds) 2007. “The Red Data Book of the Flora of Cyprus”. Cyprus Forestry Association, Lefkosia.

  1. Montmollin, B. de and Strahm, W. (Eds). 2005. “The Top 50 Mediterranean Island Plants: Wild plants at the brink of extinction, and what is needed to save them”. IUCN/SSC Mediterranean Islands Plant Specialist Group. IUCN, Gland, Switzerland and Cambridge, UK. 110 pp.