, Volume 351, Issue 1–3, pp 157–174 | Cite as

The importance of Prespa National Park for breeding and wintering birds

  • G. Catsadorakis


The breeding avifauna of Prespa National Park is ofnational and international importance both due to itshigh richness and the internationally importantpopulations of rare species. The latter include theDalmatian (Pelecanus crispus) and Great White(Pelecanus onocrotalus) pelicans and the PygmyCormorant (Phalacrocorax pygmaeus). Populationsof national interest include Cormorant (Phalacrocorax carbo), Greylag Goose (Anseranser), Goosander (Mergus merganser), GreatWhite Egret (Egretta alba) and six otherspecies of ardeids. Among the 261 bird speciesobserved in the area of ca 250 km2 since thelate 60s, 164 breed and 41 are very rarely observed.Passage migrants and winter visitors include 91species. Twelve breeding species became extinct in theNational Park during the last 25 years and others areendangered. Raptors and aquatic birds suffered moredue to habitat and land use alterations brought aboutby the construction of an irrigation scheme.Eighty-one species observed in the area are listed asin need of special protection in Annex I of the 79/409EEC Directive and 32 of them breed. Lake Mikri Prespais of virtually no importance for wintering waterfowlsince it is frozen every winter, but the Greek part ofLake Megali Prespa, which never freezes, concentratesamong other species the 20% and 35% respectively ofthe Great Crested Grebes and Tufted Ducks wintering inGreece.

avifauna avian diversity breeding birds Greece Prespa wintering birds 


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1997

Authors and Affiliations

  • G. Catsadorakis
    • 1
  1. 1.Society for the Protection of PrespaAgios GermanosGreece

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