The Annotated Ramsar List: Albania
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The Annotated Ramsar List of Wetlands of International Importance
ALBANIA / ALBANIE
The Convention on Wetlands came into force for Albania on 29 February 1996. Albania presently has 3 sites designated as Wetlands of International Importance, with a surface area of 83,062 hectares.
site; date of designation; region, province, state; surface area; coordinates
site; date de désignation; région, province, état; superficie; coordonnées
sitios; fecha de designación; región, provincia, estado; área; coordenadas
Butrint.28/03/03; Vlora; 13,500 ha ; 39°50'N 20°00'E. National Park, UNESCO World Heritage Site. A wetland complex in the southwestern part of Albania, famous for its archaeological monuments (ancient port of Buthrotum), historical significance, and natural richness. The core area is composed by a tectonic lagoon of 1600 ha, known as Lake Butrint, that is surrounded by forested hills and mountains and complemented by saltwater and freshwater marshlands. Butrint supports a large number of plants and animals considered as having an unfavorable conservation status either nationally or internationally, such as Numenius tenuirostris, Caretta caretta, Dermochelys coriacea, and Monachus monachus. The area is also an important spawning ground, food source and migration path for fish. The main activities are fishing, mussel farming, stock raising, vineyards and cultural tourism. Ramsar site no. 1290. Most recent RIS information: 2003.
Karavasta Lagoon. 29/11/95; Lushnja; 20,000 ha; 40º35’N 019º32’E. National Park. An enclosed brackish lagoon and areas of Pinus pinea forest, a species characteristic of the Mediterranean region. Up to 5% of the world’s breeding population of Pelecanus crispus (1,000 individuals) and significant portions of the European breeding populations of Sterna albifrons and Glareola pratincola are supported. Human activities include recreation, hunting, timber harvesting, and fishery. Ramsar site no. 781. Most recent RIS information: 1995.
Lake Shkodra and River Buna.02/02/06; Malesia e Madhe, Shkodra; 49,562 ha; 42°03'N 019°29'E. National protected area. The eastern side of the largest lake in the Balkan Peninsula, shared with Montenegro (Skadarsko Jezero Ramsar site), and the River Buna with its near natural delta on the East Adriatic coast. The area comprises a variety of habitats: freshwater, brackish water, woodland, freshwater marshes, wet pastures, sandy shore and rocky habitats supporting about 900-1000 plant species. Connection with the River Drin ensures the migration of mainly fish species from the Adriatic via Shkodra Lake to and from Ohrid and Prespa Lakes, such as the endangered Acipenser stellatus and Salmothymus obtusirostris as well as the critically endangered species Acipenser studio and Chondrostoma scodrensis. The site hosts about 25,000 wintering waterbirds, amongst them the endangered Oxyura leucocephala and the critically endangered Numenius tenuirostris. Threats arise from past and present practices of drainage for agriculture, uncontrolled development, changes in water regime, deforestation, illegal hunting and fishing, and introduced species. Shkodra (Skadar, Scutari) is known for its cultural heritage of more than 2000 years, e.g. the Illyrian walls and the ruins of a 600-year-old catholic church. Today the main activities are agriculture, stock raising, fishing and tourism. Ramsar site no. 1598. Most recent RIS information: 2006.