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Natura 2000 site Madzharovo

BG0002014 

Surface – 3 550 hectares.

A part of the deep, narrow valley of the Arda river, surrounded by mountain slopes and rock massifs up to 150 m high. The area is located between the village of Borislavtsi and the town of Madzharovo. A big part of its territory is occupied by rock complexes, single cliffs and stony screes. The diverse relief and soil cover determine the development of a mosaic of tree, shrub and grass vegetation. At places the screes are covered by mixed broadleaved forests of Quercus cerris, Quercus frainetto and Quercus pubescens, with Mediterranean elements, like Juniperus oxycedrus, Colutea arborescens, etc. There are isolated areas, covered by shrubs of Paliurus spina-christi mixed with Jasminum fruticans and combined with xerothermal grass formations of Mediterranean elements. The agricultural lands are located mainly in the high parts of the valley and valley extension itself. The riverbed is sandy-stony and its banks are overgrown with willows Salix spp. and shrubs. The area is rich of rare and threatened plant and animal species.

The territory of Madzharovo supports 174 bird species. Of the birds occurring there, 78 species are of European conservation concern (SPEC), 6 of them being listed in category SPEC 1 as globally threatened, 20 in SPEC 2 and 52 in SPEC 3 as species threatened in Europe. The area is of global importance, as it is a representative biome for the Mediterranean zone. Six biome-restricted species, typical for the Mediterranean zone, out of 9 established in Bulgaria occur there: Black-eared Wheatear, Olive-tree Warbler, Sub-alpine Warbler, Sardinian Warbler, Rock Nuthatch and Black-headed Bunting. Five globally threatened species occur in the area as summer visitors, migrants or during the winter. A colony of Griffon Vultures in Bulgaria breeds in the area on the cliff banks of Arda River. Madzharovo is one of the most important areas in the country on a European Union scale for the breeding of Black Stork, Griffon Vulture and Black Kite. The area holds one of the most significant on a European scale populations in the country of the Rock Thrush, Ortolan Bunting, Olive-tree Warbler and the Black Stork. Madzharovo is proposed to be included in the National Ecological Network for conservation of the habitats of a complex of 65 breeding species and 37 summering, migrating and wintering species.

About 7% of the territory of Madzharovo is under legal protection as protected areas. In 1997 the area was designated as Important Bird Area by BirdLife International. The IBA is approved as SPA under Bird Directive by a decision of the Council of Ministers since 2 March 2007.

There are plans for development of mini hydropower stations at Arda River that will destroy the remaining river habitats. One of the potential threats both to the habitats and to the birds in the area is the development of wind turbine farms.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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