© Consorci Alba-Ter

RIPARIA-TER PROJECT

Life + RIPARIA-TER

Since the 90s the European Union (EU) has awarded grants for natural resource conservation projects to its member states through the LIFE programme (http://ec.europa.eu/environment/life/).

The project “Recovery of riparian habitats on the Ter river (Riparia-Ter)” is one of the beneficiaries of the 2010-2013 Life + Nature Programme. The target area consists of 138.53 hectares of the Natura 2000 Network (http://ec.europa.eu/environment/nature/natura2000/index_en.htm) Riberes del Baix Ter ES5120011 area. The project is developed in the municipal districts of Bescanó (http://www.bescano.org), Sant Gregori (http://www.santgregori.cat), Salt (http://www.viladesalt.cat), Girona (http://www.girona.cat/web) and Jafre (http://www.jafre.cat).

The Alba-Ter Consortium acts as project beneficiary and coordinator and the councils of Bescanó, Salt and Girona as partner beneficiaries. There are however activities in the municipalities of Sant Gregori and Jafre which are developed in coordination with their councils. The scientific monitoring of the project is carried out by the University of Girona’s (http://www.udg.edu) Chair for Mediterranean Littoral Ecosystems (http://www.museudelamediterrania.org/catedra-decosistemes-litorals).

 

    What is LIFE +?

      • A support instrument of EU policy on environmental matters.
      • Aimed at co-financing projects for the conservation and restoration of the environment.
      • It involves the execution of conservation and recovery projects of habitats and species of flora and fauna that are of interest to the community.
      • It is applied to areas of the European Union of international importance.

    Spheres of action

    The LIFE+ Nature Project "Recovery of riparian habitats of the river Ter (Riparia-Ter)” focuses on the far northeast of the Iberian Peninsula, in the northeast of the Principality of Catalonia. More specifically, in the region of Girona, in four areas of the lower section of the Ter river after the Sau-Susqueda-El Pasteral reservoir area. The Baix Ter (ES5120011) riverside area is on the middle-lower and lower course of the Ter.

    Description of the area

    There are four areas of activity, called TER-1, TER-2, TER-3 and TER-4. All of the land included in the project is public –either owned by the municipality or by the Catalan Water Agency (ACA)– (http://aca-web.gencat.cat/aca/appmanager/aca/aca/).
    Illa de la Pilastra (TER-1) The main part of the land is owned by the Town Council of Bescanó. The rest is owned by the public water supply. Currently the area is in disuse and covered by a deteriorated riverside forest and the remains of abandoned leafy plantations. The surface area is 12.62 hectares.
    Les Deveses de Salt (TER-2) This covers an extensive area mainly outside Salt but also Girona. Part of the area is owned by the public water supply and managed by the respective councils and part is land bought by the City Council of Girona. The area is a mosaic of riverside formations in different stages of conservation as well as old riverbeds of the Ter, temporary and permanent ponds and/or dry meadows, among others. It is on the rural-urban fringe and is used by the public. The surface area covers 66.74 hectares.
    Illa del Ter in Pedret / Bosc de Can Salvatella (TER-3). This rural-urban fringe area is within the municipality of Girona and includes a fluvial island (Illa del Ter in Pedret) and a considerable part of the riverbank known as Can Salvatella Forest. It includes land owned by the public water supply which is managed by the City Council of Girona. The land is tree covered in its majority, including riverbank forests in different stages and the remains of old plantations, although there are also areas of old, unused vegetable patches. The surface area covers 29.59 hectares.
    Illa d’Avall (TER-4) The land, which is an old fluvial island, is owned by Jafre Town Council. Currently it is not used for any purpose although for years, uncontrollable activities have been held such as motocross. The land is populated by various riverbank forests, shrubland and dry meadows. The surface area covers 30.04 hectares.

    Threats

    Las principales amenazas que hay en estas zonas de actuación son:
     

    • Invasion of exotic plant species 

      The presence of invasive, exotic plant species has been discovered in the riverbank habitats. According to available data the more aggressive species include: Robinia pseudoacacia, Arundo donax, Bambusa sp., Ailanthus altissima, Acer negundo, Ligustrum japonicum, Parthenocissus quinquefolia.
    • Disappearance and deterioration of riverside forests

      Riverside habitats generally occupy and often only in part, no more than the first few metres of the bank due to intensive farming and forestry and the extraction of aggregates. This leads to a loss in the structure of plant communities and alterations in the composition of the species.
    • Artificial development of banks and river margins 

      Changes to the river banks are mainly linked to farming and forestry of old flood plains and to aggregate extraction works. Historically the river has been “cornered”, modifying the topography of its banks in order to prevent the farmland from flooding.
    • Disappearance and deterioration of river marshland 

      Along the course of the river Ter, there used to be numerous marshes of different sizes consisting of flooded areas when the river was in spate, as well as temporary or permanent ponds often caused by old beds of the actual river. As the river has lost its natural fluvial dynamics, as a result of various hydraulic plant works along its bed and of the progressive reduction in its volume due to higher water consumption, these marshes have gradually disappeared.
    • Deterioration of natural systems due to excessive use 

      Free access for people and also vehicular traffic is one of the main causes of deterioration and fragmentation of the natural areas included in this project. Free access leads to the mass influx of visitors to some areas and at some periods in time, with the resulting affects on the habitat and species, due to excess trampling and disturbance of wild fauna. However, more often public access to riverbanks has a diffused effect both over time and on the area, generating an impact that is often difficult to recognise at first glance but which is real. We refer to the dumping of waste and abandoning of domestic animals.
    • Reduction of the abundance and diversity of fauna

      Although exact data is not available of the historic evolution of the majority of the fauna populations, regressive trends have been observed of numerous species characteristic of the river along the course of the Ter. The causes of this decline are numerous, from hunting, exploitation (hunting and fishing) or direct capture, to the introduction of exotic animal species and the reduction and deterioration of their habitats.

    Project objectives

    The objectives of the project are:

      • Recovery of riparian habitats of the Ter river, particularly alluvial forests of Alnus glutinosa (alder) (Habitat 91E0*), Salix alba (white willow) and Populus alba (white poplar) (Habitat 92A0) and temporary Mediterranean ponds (Habitat 3170*).
      • Management of access to the target sites to prevent deterioration of these ecosystems as a result of excessive human use, above all in suburban areas. Attempt to introduce the importance of natural resources for obtaining a sustainable management compatible with the conservation of natural areas.

    Financing

    The total budget for the project is €929,100 divided between four years (2010-2013).

    Financing is provided by:

      • Contribution from the EU, LIFE+Nature Programme (€464,550 50%).
      • Alba-Ter Consortium, coordinating beneficiary (€279,550 25%).
      • Councils of Bescanó, Salt and Girona, partner beneficiaries (€60,000 6%).
      • Provincial Government of Girona, co-financing institution (€125,000 8%).
      • Obra Social “la Caixa”, co-financing organism (€100,000 11%)

    LIFE Technical Office


    List of actions

    The 20 actions planned for the LIFE Project are grouped under 4 strategic lines:

    A. Preliminary actions, preparation of management and/or action plans
    A.1- Preparation of site management plans
    A.2- Preparation of execution projects for the different management actions proposed for the project
    A.3- Preparation of an itinerary and access management project
     
    C. Specific conservation actions
    C.1- Control of invasive exotic plant species
    C.2- Improvement of fluvial forests and other forests of interest
    C.3- Reforestation of riverbank forest habitats
    C.4- Morphological restoration of river margins
    C.5- Recovery of temporary flood zones
    C.6- Periodic restoration, maintenance and cleaning
    C.7- Management of accesses and network of itineraries

    D. Public awareness-raising and communication of results
    D.1- Notice boards, posters and signposting of itineraries
    D.2- Communication of the project via a website, educational material about the activities (pamphlets, newsletters, leaflets, self-guides...) and communication
    D.3- Organisation of events: presentation-conference, local lectures and meetings and an international congress
    D.4- Education and awareness-raising campaign
    D.5- Preparation of a Layman’s report 

    E. Operation of the Project

    E.1- Project management
    E.2- External audit
    E.3- Scientific management and follow-up
    E.4- Preparation of activity reports
    E.5- Preparation of final management plans: Conservation Plans after LIFE+ Nature

    Digital documents

    Here you can download LIFE+ Nature (LIFE08 NAT/E/000072) project documents in pdf format:


    Final report. Click here.

    Management Plans

    Management Plan TER 1 Illa de la Pilastra. Click here. In Catalan.

    Management Plan TER 2 Salt. Click here. In Catalan.

    Management Plan TER 3 Girona. Click here. In Catalan.

    Management Plan TER 4 Illa d'Avall. Click here. In Catalan.


    Valued Memories

    Valued Memory TER 2, Basses Maçana. Click here. In Catalan.

    Valued Memory TER 2, Gorga Quirze. Click here. In Catalan.

    Valued Memory TER 3, Braç Ter. Click here. In Catalan.

    Valued Memory TER 4, Basses Jafre. Click here. In Catalan.
     

    Acces Management Plan

    Acces Management Plan. Click here. In Catalan.


    Scientific monitoring report of VERTEBRATES
    Scientific monitoring report of vertebrates 2010. Click here. In Catalan.
    Scientific monitoring report of vertebrates 2011. Click here. In Catalan.
    Scientific monitoring report of vertebrates 2012. Click here. In Catalan.
    Scientific monitoring report of vertebrates 2013. Click here. Catalan-English.
    Scientific monitoring report of vertebrates 2013. Click here. Spanish-English.

    Scientific monitoring report of VEGETATION
    Scientific monitoring report of vegetation 2011. Click here. In Catalan.
    Scientific monitoring report of vegetation 2012. Click here. In Catalan.
    Scientific monitoring report of vegetation 2013. Click here. In Catalan.
    Scientific monitoring report of vegetation 2013. Click here. In Spanish.
    Abstract scientific monitoring report of vegetation 2013. Click here. Spanish-English.

    Scientific monitoring report of AQUATIC WILDLIFE AND ECOLOGICAL STATUS OF FLOOD ZONES
    Scientific monitoring report of aquatic wildlife and ecological status of flood zones 2011. Click here. In Catalan.
    Scientific monitoring report of aquatic wildlife and ecological status of flood zones 2012. Click here. In Catalan.
    Scientific monitoring report of aquatic wildlife and ecological status of flood zones 2013. Click here. In Catalan.
    Abstract scientific monitoring report of aquatic wildlife and ecological status of flood zones 2013. Click here. In Spanish.
    Abstract scientific monitoring report of aquatic wildlife and ecological status of flood zones 2013. Click here. In English.

    Riparia-Ter Project

    Robinia pseudoacacia - Ailanthus altissima Protocol, Spanish version

    Acer negundo - others Protocol, Spanish version

    Robinia pseudoacacia - Ailanthus altissima Protocol, English version

    Acer negundo - others Protocol, English version

    Other LIFE projects

    A continuación podéis consultar otros proyectos LIFE que pueden ser de vuestro interés.

    • LIFE ENVIROMENT

      Model of restoration of dunes habitats in L’Albufera de Valencia (2001-2004)

      Project demonstrating the use of the soil and environmental management of the Gallecs territory as a stable biological connector of the urban fringes of the metropolitan area of Barcelona (2001-2004)

      Green Belt (2001-2004)

      LIC PARGA-LADRA-TÁMOGA. Improvement of the floodable forest and dystrophic lake, Lugo, Galicia (2001-2006)

      Restoration, Conservation and Management of the Gallocanta Lagoon (2000-2003)

      Restoration and management the lagoons and coastal systems of the Baix Ter (1999-2003)

      LIFE Project: Villacañas Wetland Areas (1999-2002)

      Pirineu Viu (1998-2002)

      LIFE Project – Sustainable management of Punta de la Móra, Tarragona (1998-2001)

      Restoration of the “Estany de Sils” (1998-2001)
    • LIFE+ NATURE FLORA

      Conservation of areas with threatened flora in Minorca (2001-2004)

      Protection of the Posidonia meadows in SCIs of the Balearics (2001-2005)

      Life MYAS Project. European Mycological Network (2001-2004)

      Truffles in the Soria Region
    • LIFE+ NATURE FAUNA

      Recovery of amphibian and aquatic reptile habitats in the Baix Ter wetlands (2005-2008)

      Conservation of the threatened freshwater mussel Margaritífera auricularia in the river Ebro (2001-2004)

      Life Project for the conservation of the European mink, La Rioja (2000-2004)

      Life Project: Conservation of the European mink in Catalonia

      Conservation of cetaceans and turtles in Murcia and Andalusia

      Conservation of the Audouin’s gull in Catalonia (1996-2000)

      Brown Bear Foundation (1993-1997)
    TECHNICAL HEADQUARTERS: C/ Sant Antoni, 1 (Cultural Factory Coma-Cros) · 17190 Salt · Tel.972 40 50 91 · albater@grn.es
    ADMINISTRATIVE HEADQUARTERS: Passeig del Ter, 2 (Museu Industrial del Ter) · 08560 Manlleu · Tel.93 850 71 52 · albater@albater.org
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