This page contents short article summaries of the Nature Conservation Journal in English,
published since 2008.
The voluntary project NOBANIS (North European and Baltic Network on Invasive Alien Species) is one of the European databases on invasive alien species (IAS).
The project is an initiative of North, Central and partially also West European countries. At present, 20 countries and autonomous areas are involved in it. The Czech Republic has been a NOBANIS member since 2010, the Nature Conservation Agency of the Czech Republic being a National Focal Point. The database includes data o 8,281 terrestrial, freshwater and marine species (the Czech Republic supplied data on 500 species). In addition to the free access database, the fact sheets on 65 species providing more detailed information on them, information on pan-European, European Union and national regulations on IAS and IAS photo bank can be found at www.nobanis.org. The webpage also offers a simple interactive identification key on marine animals as well as early warning and rapid response system. The NOBANIS gateway is used by other European initiatives, e.g. by EASIN and GISD and has inspired a database on IAS in South and East Europe (ESENIAS).
Hlaváč V., Koubová M. & Neuwirthová H.: Protection of Birds against High Voltage Lines. Is There a Sheet Lightning?
The Czech Republic is cut across by 70,000 kilometres of high voltage overhead transmission and distribution power lines. The transmission system also includes more than 750,000 transmission towers and electricity pylons.
Overhead power lines affect birds by injuring and killing them on unsuitable high voltage utilities resulting from causing short circuits (short circuit between energised wires, or short-to-ground) or by collision into the cables of power lines. The article pays special attention to protection of birds against injuries caused by electric power. Discharge is caused by connecting a wire and a curtain rod or connecting two wires by a bird body. Due to unsuitable technologies, most of the utilities are fatally dangerous particularly for medium-size and large birds including rare and threatened species, e.g. the White-tailed Eagle (Haliaeetus albicilla), Osprey (Pandion haliaetus), Peregrine (F. peregrinus), Saker (F. cherrug) or the Red Kite (Milvus milvus). Power lines passing through the open landscape and through sites of higher bird accumulation are extremely dangerous. Since 1980, preventive measures against electrocution, e.g. installing protective utilities or developing new designs have been applied in the Czech Republic. Pursuant to the national legislation, a transmission system operator is obliged to implement technological measures to protect birds on new, existing or renewed high voltage transmission utilities by June 6, 2024. In collaboration with the Ministry of the Environment of the Czech Republic, the Nature Conservation Agency of the Czech Republic (NCA CR) deals with the topic both technically and by making every effort to closely co-operate with main electric energy distributors in the country. Particularly due to activities carried out by E.ON Distribuce, Ltd. suppliers had been called to develop new safe technologies for all the types of transmission towers and electricity pylons. New proposals from some of them helped to make energy distribution utilities safer and the NCA CR could issue its preliminary recommendations on the technologies. These products may be considered as a considerable progress in protection of birds on high voltage overhead transmission power lines. The authors believe that due to active collaboration between the State Nature Conservancy authorities and electric energy distributors, proper attention will be given to the issue and the current positive trend will be soon reflected by decline in numbers of birds killed on electric transmission lines.
Doležalová J., Vojar J. & Solský M.: Using Natural Succession in Restoration of Areas Affected by Mining
The authors deal with reasons, why spontaneous vegetation succession has not been more significantly used in restoration practice in the Czech Republic.
At the same time, they propose steps which would strengthen the role of natural succession as an equal alternative to technically oriented reclamation which has been most often implemented yet. The authors also describe main principles for establishing and managing areas left to spontaneous succession, particularly on coal mining spoil heaps. The contribution follows up with the article published in this journal aiming at biological significance of post-mining areas for amphibians (Ochrana přírody, 67, 3, 8-11, 2012). In addition to their own experience from the field, the authors were inspired by the Guidelines for Ecological Restoration of Sites Disturbed by Mining and Industrial Deposits (Řehounek et al. 2010) which were developed by scientists, restoration/reclamation experts and State/Public Administration staffs. Based on these general principles, the authors elaborated proposals for practical measure, significant not only from a viewpoint of amphibian conservation.
The Hluboká Dike Site of European Importance (pursuant to Act No. 114/1992 Gazette on the Protection of Nature and the Landscape, as amended later, the term for Site of Community Importance, SCI under the European Union’s Habitats Directive) is an at least nationally important refuge for a lot of threatened beetle species inhabiting old oaks bathed in the sun.
The European Stag Beetle (Lucanus cervus), Great Capricorn Beetle (Cerambyx cerdo) as well as many other threatened saproxylic beetles occur there. The Great Capricorn Beetle’s population has been monitored and has been increasing in numbers. The site is situated in southern Bohemia in an area frequently used by tourists. Various sport grounds have been built there, e.g. a golf course, an important bikeway or a roller skating route. Both a castle park and a zoological garden, both in the vicinity of the site are visited by thousands of people throughout the year. Every day, thousands of people use the bikeway. Thus, the alley should be safe for people: tree cutting is an issue at the site every year. The alleys with the highest protected beetle species richness are at the same time those most often used by tourists. Decisions on tree cutting are difficult because some provisions of the above act should be simultaneously applied. Moreover, compromises do not always solve the problem. Suitable habitat loss has been a key issue in species protection in the Hluboká Alley. The main drivers of the process include tree cutting, removal or decay of old oaks and natural succession changes related to undesirable vegetation spreading and development which shadow parts of oak tree trunk bathed in the sun or increase stand density within the alley. Other negative factors, i.e. traffic on roads and local ways and trails, vandalism, predation and collectors are rather marginal. Prospects of the site are closely related with human activities. If we aim to ensure a long-term occurrence of specially protected saproxylic beetles at the site, it is necessary to add young trees into the alley each decade, to strengthen oak natural seeding, to cut self-seeding of undesirable trees, to support creating holes in tree trunks and at the same time to maintain the trees viable.
Peřinová M. & Obermajer J.: When We Shall Go on a Highway through the České středohoří/Bohemian Mittelgebirge Hills. What about Nature and the Landscape?
The article highlights some issues related to negotiations and hearings on and granting permission for building Highway D8 which would pass through the České středohoří/Bohemian Mittelgebirge Hills Protected Landscape Area, northern Bohemia.
In particular, the authors focus on assessing the technological measures to be applied, i.e. on building bridges and tunnels which would significantly affects the landscape scenery there, and on assessing the measures related to biota, namely the endemic rowan/mountain ash Sorbus bohemica and other wood species compensatory plantings.