In the scope of the project SIMARINE-NATURA we organized the second workshop for the stakeholders in November. The aim of the workshop was to present the results of the ecological study of the Mediterranean Shag and the protocol for acting in case of accidental oil spills and oiled seabirds in the Slovenian sea. These are the central themes of the project which set new foundation for the protection of seabirds in Slovenia and thus integrated conservation of the marine environment.
Part of the ecological research was completed already last year when the analysis of the Mediterranean Shags’ diet was finished. The results of the analysis were presented at the workshop by dr. Lovrenc Lipej, the leading author of the research. This autumn we focused on the analysis of the data about the numbers and distribution of the Shags at the Slovenian sea, which were collected in the past three years on boat transects and GPS telemetry. At the end of October we thus gained the crucial results for the identification of marine IBAs and Natura 2000 sites. The potential marine IBAs were introduced to the participants at the workshop but we will present the sites to the wider public only after their official confirmation by BirdLife International, likely before the end of this year.
An important objective of the project is also the preparation of the protocol for acting in case of accidental oil spills and oiled seabirds at our sea. Bojana Lipej, the coordinator for the preparation of the protocol, stressed at the workshop that we undoubtedly wish that the protocol would never have to be used. The consequences of oil spills can never be eliminated completely despite excellent rescue actions which involve numerous professionals and volunteers.
The workshop, which took place in the multimedia hall of the Landscape park Sečoveljske soline, was attended by 19 participants. From among numerous invited stakeholders from different spheres of activity the workshop attracted mostly the representatives of nature conservation and fisheries, i.e. Ministry of the environment and spatial planning, Ministry of agriculture, forestry and food, national Institute for Nature Conservation, national Environmental Agency, Landscape parks Strunjan and Sečoveljske soline, Municipality of Koper, national Marine Biological Station and Morigenos – Slovenian Marine Mammal Society. We hope that the circle of participants will broaden at the next workshop which shall be held in March and will aim at examination of the proposal for the management guidelines of the new marine Natura 2000 sites.
The workshops within the scope of the project SIMARINE-NATURA are organized in order to involve the relevant experts, politicians and other public involved in activities in the Slovenian marine environment, in the process of establishing the new marine Natura 2000 sites. This is a new approach for defining Natura 2000 sites in Slovenia, which is expected to support better recognition and positive acceptance of the new marine sites and aid preparation of quality management guidelines.
author: Urška Koce