|A WORD FROM THE EDITOR-IN-CHIEF|
|THE NEW FOREST LAW|
|As we all know, preparations are under way to introduce the new Forest Law. The new Law will contain an important regulation which defines the use of forests and the actual size of forest and forestland area. According to Article 1, paragraph 1 of the valid Forest Law, forests and forestland are goods of interest to the Republic of Croatia and enjoy its particular protection. The specific nature of this natural wealth and its functions of general benefit, according to Article 3, paragraph 1, require special management methods. In paragraph 3 of the same article, non-market forest functions are listed in 15 points (regrettably, many forget that, in addition to classical forest management, the first and foremost task of the forestry profession is to ensure undisturbed provision of non-material forest functions). We expect that no changes will be made in the new law in this respect. The concept of forests and forestland is discussed in Article 4 of the Law, which also states that the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry is competent for all arbitration cases. However, we must wonder whether forests and forestland have always been treated in accordance with the above articles.
The Croatian Forestry Association has on several occasions discussed the issue and expressed dissatisfaction with some solutions in legal and by-legal acts. Petar Jurjević, MSc, President of the CFA, reported on this issue at the 114thelectoral assembly of the CFA for a four-year period. He was particularly dissatisfied with the regulation of the Forest Law which states that “to establish perennial cultures next to unproductive forest land it is allowed to use maquis, while we should know and constantly stress that maquis is a forest”. He also mentioned the following interesting fact: in those areas in which the demand for forestland is the highest there are hundreds of thousands of hectares of uncultivated, abandoned agricultural land. Incidentally, this is where over 50% of forest fires occur. He particularly criticized the fact that the current compensation for forests and forestland is only symbolic and unrealistic, since its amount in no way suffices to establish new forests in the same area. Needles to say, the amount of compensation is widely disproportionate to the value of goods of interest to the Republic of Croatia, as stated in Article 1 of the Forest Law. As mentioned in the Report, we are aware of the fact that “in the past period, due to diverse circumstances, state forests and forestland area also incorporated former abandoned agricultural land which is currently covered with forests resulting from succession.” It is the inaccurate definition of forests and forestland that causes numerous conflicts and discord between the forestry sector and some other sectors, in the first place agriculture.
We expect that the new categorization regulated by the future Forest Law, as well as the Law on Agricultural Lend will accurately define forests and forestland and that it will treat them in accordance with Article 1 of the valid Forest Law. We hope that the new Law will prohibit cases in which cultures, olive groves and vineyards are established on strictly forest soils simply because the owner is defined, or in which wild game, an indelible part of the forest fauna, is driven away from forests to make way for domestic cattle and their grazing and browsing needs (examples from Croatian islands). Wealso expect that all areas which are currently listed as agricultural areas but are unsuitable for agriculture (about 800.00 ha), will be used for forest cultures and plantations with pioneer and fast-growing tree species, which can be used for bio energy and other purposes.
Professor Emeritus Branimir Prpić, Ph.D.
PRPIĆ, Branimir ŠL
|ORIGINAL SCIENTIFIC PAPERS|
|Pandža,M., V.Krpina||UDK 630* 187 + 188 (001)||447|
|Forest Vegetation of the Island of Vrgada and its Islets (Dalmatia, Croatia)|
|Summary: The Vrgada Island with its surface of 2.3 km2 belongs to the group of small islands (Duplančić-Lederet et al. , 2004). It is surrounded by 14 islets and reefs: Murvenjak or Murvenik (0.609 km2), Šipnata (0.085 km2), Oblik (0.074 km2), Kozina (0.063 km2), Gira (0.056 km2), Obrovanj (0.04 km2), Artina (0.033 km2), Veliki Školjić (0.03 km2), Mali Školjić (0.013 km2) and the Rakita, Vrtlić, Lončarić, Kamičić reefs (north of Vrgada) and Kamičić (south of Vrgada). The Vrgada islets and reefs are located in Dalmatia and belong to the Zadar archipelago.
The island of Vrgada is made of Senon rudist limestone and alb-cenoman dolomites. Limestone and dolomites alternate with chondrodonts on certain parts of the island. The geological structure of the islets varies from limestone to dolomite (Mamužić et al. 1975).
For the Vrgada Island and the surrounding islets there are no climatic data; therefore, the climatic data for Biograd, the nearest weather station on the land, was used in this research. According to the data of the Hydrometeorological Institute of the Republic of Croatia for the period of 1981–2000 the average annual temperature was 15 oC. The annual precipitation was 814.2 mm/m2.
Bioclimatically, the island of Vrgada and its islets belong to the bioclimate alliance Quercion ilicis. The vegetation of this alliance belongs, phytogeographically, to the Eumediterranean vegetation zone of the Mediterranean phytogeographic region (comp. Trinajstić 1998).
The forest vegetation of the island of Vrgada and the surrounding islets was researched on several occasions during 2009 and 2010 by making relevés. On the island of Vrgada and its islets we found only the Mediterranean-Littoral vegetation belt. The most significant community in this belt is Myrto-Quercetum ilicis and on the south and southwest exposition of the island of Vrgada and its islets it is the xerothermic vegetation alliance Oleo ceratonion and in it ass. Pistacio-Juniperetum phoeniceae. A total of 31 phytocenological relevé was made.
The relevés were made and analyzed using the classical Braun-Blanquet‘s method (Braun-Blanquet 1964). All records were subjected to two numerical methods of analysis – the cluster analysis and the multidimensional scaling (Sharma 1996; McGarigal et al. 2000). The numerical analysis was made using the SYN-TAX 2000 program package (Podani 2001).
The phytocenological relevés were made and analyzed using the classical Braun-Blanquet method (Braun-Blanquer 1964) and the results are shown in the tables 1–5 whereas the graphic display (Picture 3 and 4) was made by a numerical analysis. We have determined the forest communities of garigues – Erico manipulflorae-Cistetum creticiH-ić 1958 and maquis:Myrto-Quercetum ilicis(H-ić 1963) Trinajstić (1976) 1985, Fraxino orno–Quercetum ilicisH-ić (1956) 1958,Pistacio-Juniperetum phoeniceaeTrinajstić 1987and Querco ilici-Pinetum halepensisLoisel 1971 by means of syntaxonomic analysis.
Besides these communities that are easily perceived, a part of the island of Vrgada and a part of the Islet of Artina that were afforested during the 1950es and 60es with Aleppo pine (Pinus halepensisMill.) are now overgrowing into its stands. With this spontaneously spreading Aleppo pine we can find on the island of Vrgada the holm oak maquis, within which the initial stage with the community of garigues and the terminal stage with the community Myrto-Quercetum ilicis Trinajstić (1976) 1985 are distinguished. The garigues on Vrgada develop on grasslands and abandoned olive groves and are currently naturally progressing into evergreen maquis.
On the Islet of Murvenjak theMyrto-Pistacietum lentisci(Molinier (1936) 1954) Rivas Martinez 1975) stands continue on the halophytic zone.
The pure holm oak forests Myrto-Quercetum ilicisrepresent the terminal phase in the development of the Eumediterranean zone forest vegetation of the East-Adriatic Littoral and of the island of Vrgada and its islets.
Key words: Croatia; Dalmatia; istacio-Juniperetum phoeniceae; Myrto-Quercetum ilicis; numerical analysis; the Island of Vrgada and Its Islets
KRPINA, Vesna ŠL
|Pejnović,D., K.Krapinec, M.Slamar||UDK 630* 156 (001)||461|
|Hunters in Croatia as a Socio-Geographic Group and their Socio-Demographic Characteristics|
|Summary: Numbering 50,000, hunters in Croatia are a sizeable and proportionately influential social group. They are bound by similar modes of behaviour in their leisure time, a common space of activity (hunting grounds) and identical spatial impact (hunting management zones and the associated structures), wherein they constitute a clearly distinguished and defined socio-geographic group. From 2001 to 2007 we found slow but statistically significant growth of number of hunters (r = 0,66; p <0,05).
Trends in the number of hunters in Croatia since the early 1960s have been characterised by significant fluctuations, with three basic and discernible stages: growth in their numbers up to the onset of the 1990s, when the largest number of hunters in the history of Croatian hunting was recorded (100,409 hunters); a drastic decline during the wartime and post-war periods (during the 1990s); and light growth since the beginning of the current decade. In recent years, the number of hunters in Croatia has been continually growing. During the 2001–2007 period alone, the number grew by 10,916, or 27.4 %, which is average annual growth of 1,819 hunters, or 4.6 % (Figure 1).
The highest correlation (Table 2) exists between ratio of hunters to general population and population density(r = 0,93; p <0,05), respectively average number of citizens persettlement (r = 0,90; p <0,05). These results indicate that number of hunters in total population will be lower as population density is higher. In 2001 Ratio of hunters to general population was 1:117, but 2007 this ratio was 1:73. This ratio classifies Croatia in the middle on the European scale of portion of hunters in general population.
The spatial distribution of hunters results from the interference of several factors, from natural/geographic features, through population density, phase of socio-economic development, degree of urbanisation/ruralisation and functional orientation of physical space, to the status and role of hunting traditions in the regional system of values. As a result of the cumulative causality of these factors, the highest number of hunters in 2001 at the county level was registered in Istria (3,246), followed by Primorje-Gorski Kotar County (3,005), while the lowest numbers were recorded in Varaždin (703) and Dubrovnik-Neretva Counties (994).
From the geographic standpoint, fundamental significance is accorded to study of spatial differences in hunting intensity, both hunting-geographic (number of hunters per unit surface), and hunting-demographic intensity (number of hunters per 1,000 inhabitants). Comparative analysis at the county level shows the highest hunting-geographic intensity is characterised by Međimurje County, which records a spatial intensity 2.7 times higher than Croatia’s average (185.3 hunters per 100 km2of territory in the County, in relation to 67.4 in Croatia), while the lowest is in Virovitica-Podravina County, which lags behind the national average in equal measure (25.8 hunters per 100 km2of territory in the County, in relation to 67.4 in Croatia). On the other hand, Lika-Senj County stands out with the highest hunting-demographic intensity, more than three times the Croatian average (27.9 hunters per 1,000 inhabitants in the County compared to 8.6 for Croatia as a whole). This county simultaneously records the highest coefficient of use of hunting-demographic potential among Croatia’s counties, three times the country’s average (34.3 effective per 1,000 potential hunters in the County, in comparison to 10.8 in Croatia as a whole), while the lowest coefficient of use of this potential, after the City of Zagreb (1.8 effective per 1,000 potential hunters), is Varaždin County (4.8 effective per 1,000 potential hunters).
The results of survey research conducted in December 2007, which encompassed 2,132 hunters from 44 hunting associations from almost all Croatian counties, indicate that the primary drivers of hunting activities in Croatia are men between the ages of 45 and 65, with emphasis on the 50–54 age group, and an average age of 49, of whom most have completed secondary school and are employed, and largely reside in rural areas. The highest number of hunters became involved in this activity while in their twenties, motivated by the personal need for outdoor recreation, and they account for over one half of the total number of hunts during the season and they enjoy the support/understanding of their families for this manner of using their leisure time.
The recent growth in the number of members of this social group in Croatia is a result of growing interest in hunting as an increasingly popular way to spend leisure time as the country undergoes increasing urbanisation. Growth in the number of hunters is accompanied by the correspondingly increased role of hunting as an instrument of sustainable development, both in terms of economic advancement and environmental protection, in the sense of preservation of biological diversity. This pertains in particular to Croatia’s rural and more tourism-oriented regions, in which hunting has been traditionally and even economically important in the former, while in the latter it contributes as a selective form to diversification of the tourism product.
Knowledge of the socio-demographic characteristics of hunters, above all the hunting-geographic and hunting-demographic intensity at the county level, is one of the fundamental conditions for examining the place and role of hunting in sustainable development in Croatia and its subordinate regional components. Greater familiarity with these characteristics should contribute to the more complex evaluation and planning of hunting activities in the country in compliance with the principle of sustainable development of geographic space and with sound practices in the more developed member states of the European Union.
Key words: coefficient of use of hunting-demographic potential; demographic characteristics; hunters; hunting-demographic intensity; hunting-geographic intensity; social characteristics; socio-geographic group
KRAPINEC, Krešimir ŠL
|Šerić Jelaska, L., A. Ješovnik, S. D. Jelaska, A. Pirnat, M. Kučinić, P. Durbešić||UDK 630* 114.6 + 411 (001)||475|
|Variations of Carabid Beetle and Ant Assemblages, and their Morpho-ecological Traits within Natural Temperate Forests in Medvednica Nature Park|
|Summary:The aim of this study was to investigate responses of ant and carabid assemblages and their morpho-ecological traits to habitat differences within natural temperate forests in Medvednica Nature Park. Toquantify habitat differences in examined areas, both structural heterogeneity of the vegetation and taxonomic diversity of plants were measured on six plots.
Habitat complexity was quantified using four habitat characteristics within the site: tree canopy cover; shrub canopy cover; ground herbs and leaf litter cover. Ants and carabids were sampled using pitfall traps.
Ant species richness and abundance, unlike carabid species richness were positively correlated with habitat complexity, especially with leaf litter cover on plots. The responses of insects morpho-ecological traits to habitat were recorded, with more large bodied carabids present in more complex site and higher abundance of opportunist ant species in more open sites with low complexity of vegetation. Higher dominance of certain carabid species at the lower plots then those on the top of the mountain, suggest competitive exclusion, confirming lower areas as more stable. Species adapted to colder climate, that inhabit higher elevations such as flightless forest specialist Cychrus caraboidesandCara-bus irregularis, and boreo-montane ant species Camponotus herculeanus, are less competent to colonize lower areas. Furthermore, they may not survive severe instability of their habitats, especially in a changing climate. Overall results suggest that conservation issues need to be focused on preserving stability and structural complexity of forest habitat in summit areas of the mountain.
Key words: altitude; biodiversity; forest habitat; litter; nature conservation; vegetation structure
Šerić Jelaska, Lucija
Jelaska, Sven D.
|Čas, Miran||UDK 630* 156 (001)||487|
|Disturbances and Predation on Capercaillie at Leks in Alps and Dinaric Mountains|
|Abstract:Capercaillie (Tetrao urogallusL.) populations in central and south-east Europe cover fragmented edge habitats and are recorded to decline since 1960ies. Capercaillie leks in Slovenia are present at the south-eastern edge of the Alpine metapopulation and at north-western edge of Dinaric. These populations were monitored at leks in two periods in 1980 (466 monitored leks) and 2000 (599). All leks were monitored by local specialists (hunters and/or foresters) and main causes of observed lek populations decline were addressed to each endangered lek. Special emphasis was given to predation at leks, as suggested by D. Jenkins (2008). The six named reasons in 1980ies affected 39 leks with logging of old-growth forests (at 71.8% of leks) and construction of forest roads (7.7%) as most pronounced. In 2000 nine reasons affected 92 leks: (i) mountain tourism (26.1%), (ii) cutting of old-growth forests (19.60%), (iii) predators attacks (18.5%), (iv) forest management in spring time (9.8%), (v) pastures of livestock with wire fences in forests (6.5%), (vi and vii) berries picking and overgrowing the last pastures in forest-landscape, (viii) constructions of forest roads and (ix) infrastructure. The most profound change in reasons between 1980 and 2000 mapping data were: predation at leks, mountain tourism development, increasing of forest management in spring time, wild pasturage of cattle and sheep in forests, overgrowing the last pastures in forest-landscape. A comparison of the increasing percentage of leks endangered by predators since 1980 has shown positive correlations with increasing of the main predator populations’ densities. Population density of martens (Martessp.) and wild boar (Sus scrofa) increased for 150% since 1980, while red fox (Vulpes vulpes) density increased only after 1990. Our results confirmed the assessment of reasons for threats to leks based on descriptions and experiences of observers as a suitable approach for capercaillie habitat risk assessment. Results for past decline and differences regarding to the negative impacts on lek habitats are important guidelines for foresters and wildlife managers concerning sustainable forest management and maintenance of capercaillie populations.
Key words: Capercaillie (Tetrao urogallus); causes of leks endangerment; forest and wildlife management; mountain tourisms; predation; rare species population’s conservation
|Matošević, D., M. Pernek, B. Hrašovec||UDK 630* 453||497|
|First Record of Oriental Chestnut GallWasp (Dryocosmus kuriphilus) in Croatia|
|Summary: Oriental chestnut gall wasp (DryocosmuskuriphilusYat su matsu) (Hymenoptera: Cynipidae) is new invasive species in Europe and important pest on sweet chestnut (Castanea sativa Mill.). It is on quarantine species lists in Europe as well as in Croatia. The species originates from China and it was first introduced to Europe to Italy in 2002. It has also been recorded in Slovenia, France, Hungary and Switzerland. In May 2010. it was recorded in Croatia for the first time.
Oriental chestnut gall wasp has one generation per year (Figure 1). Adult wasps (only females are known) emerge from galls from mid June until the end of July and lay eggs in the buds. The wasp overvinters as early larval instar in buds and cannot be detected without large magnification lense. In spring when new shoots and leaves emerge the galls develop on the leaf midveins (Figure 2) or shoots. The galls, 5–20 mm in diameter, contain one or usually several chambers with white larvae, later pupae. Young galls are green, later rose-coloured and can be easily detected on sweet chestnut shoots. Old galls are brown, wood-like and remain attached to the tree up to two years (Figure 3).
The spread of oriental gall wasp occurs mainly by transport of infected plant material (scions for grafting, plants for planting) into new areas. Locally, the wasps spreads by active flight or passive (aided by wind or human dispersal) transport.
The galls disrupt twig growth and reduce fruiting. Various authors consider it as a seroius pest on sweet chestnut trees. Several control measures against this pest have prooved themselves uneffective. Pruning of infested shoots can be done in small orchards but this method is uneffective in forests. Some parasitoid species, e.g. Torymus sinensis, can reduce populations of oriental chestnut gall wasp and this species has already been introduced as biological control agent in Japan, Korea and Italy.
Oriental sweet chestnut gall wasp was first recorded in Croatia on 21 May 2010 in Lovran and after that in several other sweet chestnut forests (Table 1, Figure 5). According to the number of galls per shoot it can be estimated that on the localities Lovran, Samobor and Ozalj (single galls per leaf/shoot) the pest has recently been introduced. Localities in Zagreb had high infestation rates (numerous galls per leaf/shoot) and it can be estimated that the pest is here present since 2007 or 2008. The spread forecast for Croatia for the following years is given. Intensive spread can be expected in all areas where sweet chestnut is grown, lower intensity in Istria, surroundings of Karlovac and Banija, and much higher intensity and quicker spread in Zagreb area, Hrvatsko zagorje and Samoborsko gorje. The trasport of infested planting material to uninfected zones (region of hills in Slavonia) shoud be strongly avoided.
Key words: damage; galls; quarantine pest; sweet chestnut
MATOŠEVIĆ, Dinka ŠL
PERNEK, Milan ŠL
HRAŠOVEC, Boris ŠL
|Tomićević, J., M. A. Shannon, D. Vuletić||UDK 630* 903 + 907.1||503|
|Developing Local Capacity for Participatory Management of Protected Areas: The Case of Tara National Park|
|Summary:In this study the focus is on the role of local communities in the management of protected areas with the expectation that without the cooperation and assistance of local communities achieving biodiversity conservation in places where the land and resources are fundamental to supporting people’s livelihoods will be less successful than if the local people actively support this goal.
Management capacity in protected areas depends upon the system of governance, the level of resources and local community support. The key question of interest at the global level are whether the responsible authorities have the capacity to manage their protected areas effectively, and whether desired outcomes are achieved on the ground. Measuring these dimensions is contextual; what is effective in one country or locale may be inappropriate in another. Thus, assessing management capacity is context specific.
The potential declaration of Tara National Park located in Serbia as a Biosphere Reserve necessitated research to characterize the institutional context, the social and demographic situation of the communities within the Park boundaries. There is a growing recognition that the sustainable management of protected areas ultimately depends on the cooperation and support of the local people. In order to achieve sustainable conservation, state legislators and environmental planners should involve local people in the management of protected areas and need to identify and promote social processes that enable local communities to conserve and enhance biodiversity as a part of their livelihood system.
Drawing upon research in Tara National Park, this paper analyzes the potential capacity of people living within Tara National Park to effectively participate in the management of the protected area by incorporating activities that promote biodiversity within their everyday livelihood strategies. The results demonstrate that sustaining or providing alternative livelihood strategies is necessary in order to halt the exploitation of protected areas by local people striving to survive.
Key words: Participatory management; protected areas; local community; livelihoods; communicative action
Shannon, Margaret A.
VULETIĆ, Dijana ŠL