One of the key elements of our project is to map out why Old-Drava oxbow is important for locals, to whom it is unique and why it is useful or precious. In order to find it out, we have organized four meetings with the participation of nearby residents, anglers frequenting the Old-Drava, foresters, fishermen, nature protection and border control officials, hunters, farmers, researchers and others concerned with the oxbow due to their official tasks.
Info Day of the LIFE program was held in Croatia In Zagreb on March 21st, organized by the Ministry of Environment and Energy, and the National Contact Point for the LIFE program.
The new WWF Magazine edited within the framework of the project is out now. The booklet gives a broad perspective of the partners' work for a better water supply of the oxbow, and for the improvement of the quality of the gallery forests along the water; and describes their results achieved so far.
The project’s goals, activities and results are now available in a colourful Old-Drava leaflet that was created in Hungarian, Croatian and English.
The ecological baseline research on Old-Drava finished in the autumn 2015. The final report of the status of flora and fauna is now available. This was the most detailed assessment of the Old-Drava so far.
Renewal of the forest crop began in the floodplain forest along the Old-Drava. In previous years and decades, there were several plantations in the field, however, inappropriate species were planted quiet often.
During the fall of 2015, we demolished part of the old and ruined fishing platforms along the Old-Drava. This task was a long time coming, as these messy platforms and their surroundings were an eye sore in the oxbow.
Surveys of the habitats, terrestrial and aquatic fauna of the Old Drava were conducted in 2015 during spring and summer. Groups of researchers familiar with the Drava and wetland ecology carried out the analyses along the 17-km-long oxbow. The diversity of habitats along the meandering Old-Drava was well presented by the fact that 17 habitat types were registered within the only 80 allocated habitat patches.
River Drava is one of Europe’s treasure troves of biological diversity. It is a hot spot of natural habitats, which are now rare in Europe, such as large and very well preserved floodplain forests, river islands, gravel and sand banks, side branches and oxbows. The river and its riparian habitats are home to species, like white-tailed eagle, black stork, little tern, or sand martin.
The project’s main objective is to contribute to the conservation and resilience of the riparian habitat through improving the water regime and improving biodiversity status of floodplain forest along the oxbow.
The spring arrived to the Old-Drava oxbow, and the assessment of the ecological status started. The baseline study of the habitat is important, since we would like to monitor the results of the project at a later stage. The baseline study is the first assessment of this activity, which define the reference status. The assessment will be completed both Hungarian and Croatian side of the Old-Drava.
The first official visit of the LIFE monitoring team took place this February int he visitor center of the Danube-Drava National Park Directorate. We reported about the partners’ activities, and about the upcoming activities. The visit was accompanied by a field visit, where the project partners and the colleague of the monitoring team visited the Old-Drava.