From 07 March till 17 March 2016 our employee Petra Kovač-Konrad participated on a field research as a part of Yucatan anchialine fauna project in Mexico. Univesidad Autonoma de Mexico, Departamento de Zoologia conducted the project in cooperation with Texas A&M University in Galveston.
Nohoch Nah Chich cenotes
Dr. Fernando Alvarez is the project manager and Pepe Villalobos, Adriana Berladini, Adriana Alanis, Brenda Duran, Sergio Abdiel Benítez León, Oliver Velazquez, Olinka Cortes, Alberto Mora, Rachel Roenfeldt and dr. Thomas Ilife also participated. Biodiversity of cenotes* as anchialine eco-systems was researched. Jailhouse cenotes were visited which are a part of Ox Bel Ha, Nohoch Nah Chich cenotes which are a part of Sac Actun system, Alamo cenotes and Zapote cenotes.
Gathering of fauna samples and measuring
of physical and chemical parameters
The goal of the project was to collect samples of fauna, measure physical and chemical parameters of water, make a video for a documentary and make a photo documentation. This research is the beginning of a long international cooperation with Univesidad Autonoma de Mexico during which data about underwater cave systems and karst will be collected. At the end of June there will be another field research and joint application for the project.
Between 15. and 19. February 2016. the workshop about further structuring of our society and also about the strenghtening of one of the most valuable projects which Hyla is planning to do in the next two years. MAVA foundation financed the workshop, and the moderator was Ilke Tinders from the Foundation of Succes (FOS). Our strategic partners from Croatia and the region also participated on the workshop. (BIOM, WWF Adria, IUCN SEE, ATRA and HIB)
We became acquainted with the Open standards methodology and we made a new Theory of change of Hyla based on our three year strategic plan.
In the second part of the workshop we discussed about joint participation in the project with our partners and we strenghtened the relationships between the organisations. Last week was intellectually demanding and time-consuming, but we think that we will use the acquired knowledge to improve our work and the status of our organisation in the future.
We would like to thank MAVA foundation for all the help which they gave us and still giving us. We would like to thank all our partners which participated in this extremely important workshop. We think that we built good foundations for future collaboration and we are looking forward for all the interesting projects that lay ahead of us.
LOKNA project is approved under the Operative programme of territorial cooperation Slovenia-Croatia 2007.-2013., with the Public Institution "Priroda" as the leading partner. This project was mostly financed by the EU - European Regional Development Fund. The main goal of the project is to preserve and revitalize water biotopes (pools on Krk island and barjanska okna in the Ljubljana marshes) through joint cross-border approach of evaluation, inventarisation, revitalization and promotion of water biotopes. You can see one example of such revitalisation on this link: Revitalization_in croatian
Realization of the activities of the project begun in February of 2015, and the of project is planned to end in May of 2016. The main activities in Croatia are conducted on the Krk island, where the listing of 60 pools is taking place along with scientific researches on three selected pools (dragonflies, plants, bats, herpetofauna and birds), making an educational trail about karst pools and photo exhibition, educational workshop and the final conference about the project, all of which is done with the help and cooperation of partners and associates. The joint GIS data base of water biotopes and web page of the project will also be made. The important segment of the project is printing multilanguage educational and promotional materials – flyers, posters and brochures. They contribute to the recognition of the project and raising of awareness and educating locals and tourists. A short notice about some of the researched groups of animals is here: Researched animal_in croatian
CHS-Hyla participated in this project as an associate with the goal of listing the species of herpetofauna on three pools on Krk island: Omatine pool, pool near the small oak and pool near Poljice, together with their terrestrial habitats. On these three locations five species of amphibians and reptiles have been found. One of them is the marsh frog (Pelophylax ridibundus) which was the most abundant (Figure 1).
Figure 1. Marsh frog, Pelophylax ridibundus
The yellow-bellied slider (Trachemys scripta scripta) was also found during this research. This is a native species in the USA. These turtles are used as pets in Croatia. They are found in the nature habitats because people throw them out when they don't want to take care of them anymore. This species is very well adjusted to our climate and they are in competition with our native species (for example European pond turtle, Emys orbicularis), especially in feeding and basking. This is why this species is an invasive species in Croatia.