Akrotiri Marsh gets its breathing space back and ready to welcome visitors

Squacco Heron by Albert Stoecker_450_850_crp
Birds, as other wildlife, depend upon the delicate balance of ecosystems for their survival. Restoring, protecting and properly managing habitats is key to the preservation of biodiversity. Akrotiri Marsh, a unique wetland within the British Sovereign Base Areas, is home to many bird and plant species.

The project team together with the Akrotiri Community Council celebrates the completion of the project with an event taking place at the marsh on 18 May in light of International Day for Biodiversity (May 22nd). This year’s IDB theme is “Biodiversity and Sustainable Tourism”, which by happy coincidence is a big part of aims of the Akrotiri Marsh restoration project.

This important wetland has been suffering from lack of management during the last few decades but thanks to the Darwin-funded project “Akrotiri Marsh Restoration: a flagship wetland in the Cyprus SBAs” the site has benefited from on-site conservation actions as well as awareness raising actions and creation of visitor infrastructure. The project was implemented by BirdLife Cyprus, the Akrotiri Environmental Education Centre and the RSPB (BirdLife in the UK).

To celebrate the completion of the project and highlight its results, the project team is organising a launch event on Thursday, 18 May 2017. The event will start at 17:30 at Akrotiri Marsh with the inauguration of one of the two birdwatching hides (north side of the site) built within the project framework and will also include the release of rehabilitated wild birds by the Game and Fauna Service. The event will continue at the Akrotiri Environmental Education Centre at 19:00, with a presentation on the challenge of managing the Akrotiri Peninsula and a presentation on the Akrotiri Marsh restoration project.

Join us to celebrate the completion of the project for the restoration of Akrotiri Marsh and enjoy birdwatching from the new visitor infrastructure. Visitors will also have the opportunity to learn about the project’s achievements and the future of Akrotiri Marsh as well as the significance of Akrotiri Peninsula for wildlife and the challenges of protecting it. The hide will be inaugurated by the Commander of British Forces Cyprus, Major General James Illingworth OBE, the RSPB (BirdLife in the UK) Global Conservation Director, Martin Harper and the BirdLife Cyprus President, Melis Charalambides.

To find more about the project and its actions please visit www.akrotirimarsh.org

Event Programme, Thursday 18 May 2017
17:30 Inauguration of Akrotiri Marsh birdwatching hide (north side of site)
19:00 Presentation on Akrotiri Marsh restoration project, challenges of managing Akrotiri Peninsula at Akrotiri Environmental Education Centre

Please let us know if you are attending by contacting BirdLife Cyprus on 22455072 or on melpo.apostolidou@birdlifecyprus.org.cy

The 2-year project (April 2015 to March 2017) titled ‘Akrotiri Marsh Restoration: a flagship wetland in the Cyprus SBAs’ was funded by the Darwin Initiative through UK Government funding (Darwin Plus, the Overseas Territories Environment and Climate Fund).


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