Cross-border wetlands conservation in the Polesie region of Belarus, Russia and Ukraine

Category: Europe, Europe regional initiatives, Europe Regional News

Last updated: June 14th, 2019

Transboundary project areaThe border region of Belarus, Russia and Ukraine hosts one of Europe’s largest floodplain areas: the Polesie which covers more than 65,000 sqkm. The region is of immense value which makes is a cornerstone of a European network of conservation important areas. Almost all key larger mammals which are typical for undisturbed ecosystems can be found in the project region. The wetlands of the region include fen mires and raised bogs, floodplain areas with riparian forests and are complemented by large forest areas. The wetlands of the region are an important stop-over site for migratory waterbirds during spring and autumn. The project is implemented by the Frankfurt Zoological Society (FZS) which closely cooperates with national project partners and the national governmental conservation authorities which together form the project steering group.

The project aims to promote the protection and the sustainable use of trans-boundary wetlands of global conservation significance in Belarus, Russia and Ukraine. In addition the project strives to encourage cross-border cooperation of the three project countries towards wetland conservation. The project region encompasses the border districts („oblasts“) of the three countries.  The following outcomes are expected to be achieved:

  1. an inventory of wetlands of the region is conducted (incl. mapping) following international standards;
  2. the conservation status of selected sites is upgraded through practical measures;
  3. management plans are developed for pilot areas;
  4. the relevance for C-Emission and sequestration for selected sites is examined and documented;
  5. a series of education and information measures are conducted to underpin the importance and relevance of wetlands for conservation;

Donor of the Project:

  • Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety
  • The German Federal Nature Conservation Agency (BFN)
  • The Federal environment agency (UBA)

The Project partners:

  • Wetlands International (Russian programme)
  • Frankfurt Zoological Society (ZGF)
  • NGO «BirdLife Belarus» (Belarus)
  • NGO «BirdLife» (Ukraine)
  • Brianskiy Les” State Nature Biosphere Reserve
  • Non-commercial Partnership “Birds&People” (Regional Project coordinator)