Wrapping up the LIFE Oroklini project - December 2014

It has been a busy year for the LIFE Oroklini project partners, as 2014 was the final year of project implementation. The project officially ended on 31 December 2014 while a few things still remain to be completed.
By mid-January 2015 BirdLife Cyprus will have produced a short report (layman’s report) in Greek and English, in hard copy and electronic format, outlining an overview of the project and its main results. Another publication being prepared by BirdLife Cyprus is an ecotouristic brochure for visitors containing information about the site, a site map, what a visitor can observe, as well as at other nature sites in the area. This valuable edition for promoting Oroklini Lake will be distributed at key places to attract tourists to the wetland. Moreover, the Game and Fauna Service – the project leader – will produce a Monitoring Protocol and an after-LIFE Conservation Plan. Later in 2015, when conditions in the Lake allow it, the Cyprus Electricity Authority will place fireflies on the power lines that cross the site in order to reduce the risk of collision for birds.
What was achieved during the year 2014:
During 2014, project partners produced a number of studies and reports for Oroklini Lake, such as an Ichthyological study, an Analysis of Pressures and Impacts on runoff water quality for the Oroklini Lake catchment, a Favourable Reference Value report in brochure format in Greek, a Predation report and an Action Plan for the site which provides management actions to achieve a favourable conservation status for Oroklini Lake.
In 2014, all on site conservation actions were completed. These included additional water management works, removing re-sprouted acacias and planting some more trees at the car park area around the Information Kiosk. A pedestrian crossing for visitors has also just been completed.
Conservation actions have a greater impact when implemented in combination with awareness raising actions. In 2014, project partners completed a variety of such actions like the erection of the Information Kiosk with information material and the employment of an Information Kiosk Officer to welcome visitors, the completion of an education pack for primary schools and two workshops for teachers and an Open day for the wetland. Over 2000 people visited Oroklini wetland during 2014, among them 600 pupils.
For networking purposes, two trips took place in 2014. One was in Slovenia and the other to Tour du Valat, France to see wetland management work carried out there.
Finally, 2014 was the year that the European Commission visited the project, leaving Cyprus with a very good impression on project implementation and success.
Watch this space to learn more about the project’s achievements and to read the layman’s report which will be available soon. All project deliverables can be found on the project website while many photos from implemented actions can be found in the photo gallery.

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