|Date||22 Mar 2016|
One of the specific, unique and still preserved aquatic and wetland habitats on the lower course of the river Danube – Special Nature Reserve Labudovo Okno is significant gathering place for many rare and endangered bird species. This is the most important wintering place for water birds in Serbia and one of the most important in the Balkans and Europe. The place is located at the crossroads of Pannonian plain, the Balkans and Carpathians and represents wide floodplain area along the Danube River and covers area of 6488 ha. Officially recognized as Ramsar site and Important Bird and Biodiversity Area, this place represents very important stopover for migrating water birds, wintering as well as breeding site.
It is estimated that at one moment, over 60000 up to 100000 birds gather there searching for rest and food, among which the most numerous are Greater White-fronted Geese up to 38000, Greylag Geese up to 30000, Common Pochards up to 27000, Coots up to 30000, Goldeneyes up to 11000, Smews up to 6000, thousands of Pygmy Cormorants, and thousands of various duck species, swans and grebes. Besides these birds, Labudovo Okno is well known as a gathering place for some rare and species of international importance, such as Greater Spotted Eagle, White-tailed Eagle, Ferruginous Duck, Glossy Ibis, Spoonbill, Storks, Herons and various wader species.
Among negative factors which are present on the project site, hunting and poaching stand out as the most serious and influential. Presence of hunters results with constant chaotic movement of birds. During the autumn and winter, birds are hunted with automatic shotguns and use of decoys and tape-lures, from speedboats and hides, sometimes even during night with spotlights. Every year groups of local bird hunters and from abroad (mainly from Italy) gather there. Therefore, urgent action needs to be taken to protect this high biodiversity area and improve conditions for birds that use this place.
The aim of the project is to implement urgent conservation actions and working towards a save hunting-ban area, serving as strategically crucial stop-over, wintering and breeding site for migratory water birds on the regional, national and international level. At the same time, the project will focus on cooperation between nature conservation NGOs, ornithologists and respective hunting associations, presenting the results to government bodies and decision makers and “force” them to react and halt all violations of law of nature protection.
For further information contact: