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Annual Bird Census Underway on Ohrid and Prespa Lakes (Albania, Greece, Macedonia)
Wednesday, January 09, 2002

Annual Bird Census Underway on Ohrid and Prespa Lakes in Albania, Greece and Macedonia


This year for the fifth time under the support of GTZ will be organized the Simultaneously Winter Bird Census-Midwinter census at around Ohrid and Prespa Lakes area.

The activity is fitting very well with the objectives of "Ohrid/Prespa Sustainable Region Development"- GTZ trilateral Project, achieving among the others:

-Strengthening the transboundary co-operation at Ohrid and Prespa Lakes

-Enhance the scientifically co-operation between institutions and NGOs from three sides of lakes area

-Rising awareness among the local population and other interested factor for protection of this valuable resource

The winter bird census-when it was organized for the first time on 1997 was evaluated as a very important scientific ornithological event at this Balkan Region as for the first time it was arranged as procedure by taking part the experts of the three neighboring countries.

The results of the simultaneous counting of water birds during the winter season in all three neighboring countries show that especially the shallow areas of the three lakes are of greatest importance for the water birds. This parts of the lakes are providing the best feeding grounds especially for those water birds which are adapted to the benthic flora. It could also be found that the reed belts are necessary resting sites for the water birds. Unfortunately on the Albanian part of the Macro Prespa and Ohrid Lakes the reed composition is extremely endangered and vanishing already.

The three lakes are important wintering sites for migrating water birds. This concludes that the three lakes are of international importance. The results of 2000 are confirming the results of the simultaneous counting in January 1997, 1998 and 1999.

As shown already 1997 the shallow parts of all three lakes are for wintering water birds most important. Particularly the bays of Gorica/Kallamas and Liqeenas at the Prespa lake. At the Ohrid lake the beach area between the Macedonia border and Pogradec, the Peninsula of Lin and the whole area between Drim/Podmolje until Ohrid are the most preferred sites of the waterbirds. At the Micro Prespa the whole area on the Albanian part has an importance for wintering birds.This facts could only be gathered by a common effort of ornithologist of all three countries around the lake. Experts of Macedonia, Greece, Albania and Germany counted simultaneous the birds during three days. The information created by this common action is therefore the first and reliable overview on wintering water birds on the lakes.

For more info contact

Dr. Spase Shumka, GTZ local coordinator

tel. 038 23 511 30

E-mail:ppnea@xs4all.soros.al or sprespa@yahoo.co.uk


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