Report published by Terra Cypria highlights the importance of wetlands in CyprusJuly 21, 2020
Even though many wetlands in Cyprus are known to the public and can be visited, information about their status and their total number was, until recently, scattered or even non-existent.
In order to tackle this lack of knowledge and decentralised information, Terra Cypria conducted a complete inventory of Cyprus Wetlands in 2014-2015 with the support of MAVA, offering an important tool for governmental and non-governmental stakeholders, scientists and the general public.
Aiming to bring this work to a larger Mediterranean-wide level, Terra Cypria joined the MedIsWet initiative in 2017, a consortium of 13 NGOs from 9 Mediterranean countries, working together on the conservation of island wetlands in the Mediterranean. Based on the experience acquired in the project “Conservation of the island wetlands of Greece” (2004-2013) implemented by WWF Greece, MedIsWet focusses on national wetland inventories, wetland restoration and promotion.
Within the frame of this initiative, Terra Cypria recently published a comprehensive technical report on the wetlands of Cyprus and the efforts made to enhance their protection status. The conclusions of this report emphasise that:
(a) The biological importance of artificial wetlands is mostly neglected.
(b) The biodiversity value of artificial wetlands is disregarded or neglected during their construction or restoration stage. Indeed, they tend to be treated only as artificial plans and not as artificial ecosystems.
(c) Cyprus wetlands (both natural and artificial) have a cumulative positive impact on biodiversity
Wetlands are especially important for insular environments where freshwater supply is limited and the impact of tourism and urbanisation particularly strong. They are also areas of high biodiversity, necessary stopovers for millions of migrating birds and refuge to wintering ones.