WETLANDS

Another of the fundamental objectives of LIFE IP DUERO, is to carry out the restoration of at least fifteen restoration of at least fifteen temporary wetlands (lavajos) with a total area of 186 hectares, located in the total surface area of 186 hectares, located in the project area, imitating as far as possible natural to the maximum extent possible, in order to protect the large number of existing species of flora and fauna, some of which are of flora and fauna, some of which are under protection.

The main wetlands to be restored are:

  • Laguna de los Lavajares (T.M de Ragama y Horcajo de Las Torres)
  • Lavajo Navacitor (T.M de Cervillego de la Cruz)
  • El Pernal (T.M de Morelaja de las Panaderas)
  • Laguna Redonda (T.M de San Juan de la Encinilla)
  • Lavajo de la Nava (T.M de Carpio)
  • Laguna del Oso (T.M del Oso)
Humedal

The restoration tasks to be carried out include:

  • The removal of artificial drainage.
  • Restoration of natural watercourses and drainage.
  • Restoration with native plant species.
  • Water supply to the wetlands through treated water effluent or from the diversion of water from nearby natural watercourses in rainy seasons.

Most of the land occupied by these wetlands is publicly owned, however, there are particular cases, which will require the purchase of land.

ACTIONS

The area considered is well known by the great number of “lavajos”, temporal wetlands linked to the aquifers and rivers, which support a great variety of species of fauna and flora, many of them in territories belonging to protected areas (SIC/SBPA) associated to the aquatic ecosystems. It is planned to include the wetlands to be restored which are not currently part of the Natura 2000 network among these protected sites.

Expected results:

  • Define the wetlands to be restored.
  • Assess the main characteristics and status of these wetlands.
  • Develop a small species survey during field visits to provide a baseline for action C2.
  • Promote the study of the impact of the alien species by understanding the ecological equilibriums in the aquatic ecosystems, which will be reached after evaluating the wetlands.

Reports:

Milestones:

  • Finalise work on the assessment of the status of wetlands and aquatic ecosystems.
  • Select wetlands to be restored.
  • Finalise work on the assessment of threatened and invasive species.

According to the RBMP in force, there are 393 wetlands in the basin with a total protected surface of almost 8.300 ha. In the project area are located 30 of them whereof 17 belong to territories belonging to the Natura 2000 network.

Main degradation causes of these temporal wetlands are the decrease of the phreatic level of the aquifer and the execution of artificial drainage. As result, land originally belonged to the wetland is currently being used for agriculture.

According to the River Basin Management Plan, it is foreseen a Wetland Restoration Plan in order to restore and protect the degraded aquatic ecosystems and major wetlands in this area, including renaturalising actions, re-creating associated habitats according to the Habitats Directive.

Expected results:

  • Acquire 76,25 hectares (total of land purchased by all project actions during all project development) to be destined in the future exclusively for environmental purposes instead of its current agricultural use.
  • Prevent further deterioration of the areas which are going to be restored.

Reports:

Milestones:

  • End of the purchasing process

This action aims to carry out the restoration of many of the major temporal wetlands (lavajos) located in the project area, imitating as most as possible, natural processes.

Expected results:

  • Establish a strategy to restore the wetlands and other aquatic ecosystems.
  • Recover and restore at least 15 of the 20 wetlands (186 hectares) located in the project area which are currently in poor conditions
  • Act in more than 90% of the current wetlands’ surface in the project area according to the RBMP.
  • Prevent further deterioration of this type of ecosystem.

Reports:

Milestones:

  • Begin of the works of Wetlands and aquatic ecosystems restoration
  • End of drafting wetlands’ restoration projects
  • End of the works of Wetlands and aquatic ecosystems restoration

Nowadays there is an increasing demand for natural zones for recreational uses like cycling, trekking, bird seeing etc. These recreational activities should be linked to an active natural tourism, which means that, apart from visiting the area, the experience includes the learning and awareness raising of the importance of nature conservation.

Expected results:

  • Creation of new recreational zones in natural areas close to rivers and wetlands.
  • Installation a 7 wooden huts for birdwatching in main wetlands located in the project area.
  • Restore at least 3 wooden huts.
  • Create a natural routes network with different lengths and levels of difficulty.
  • Design an app to promote the use of these paths.

Reports:

Milestones:

  • End of the works of Routes definition, signalization and App design
  • End of the works of wooden huts installation.

Monitoring and evaluation of habitat improvement actions are essential for measuring the effectiveness thereof, being a key element to redirect ineffective actions, or establish continuous improvement processes.

Expected results:

  • Measure and document the effectiveness of the projected actions as compared to the initial situation, objectives and expected results.
  • Define a tool to check the level of fulfillment of project objectives related to wetlands restoration and establish a correction method against possible divergences.

Reports:

Milestones:

  • Begin of the monitoring of the land purchase process.
  • Begin of the works of monitoring of the conservation actions of aquatic ecosystems.
  • End of the monitoring of the land purchase process.
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