The rescue of endemic priority plant species Minuartia smejkalii – Life for Minuartia

The project realised with EU funding (LIFE15NAT/CZ/000818) is aimed at rescuing priority endemic species Minuartia smejkalii, which worldwide distribution is currently limited only into two localities included to NATURA 2000 network (Hadce u Hrnčíř SCI and Želivka SCI). Populations on both sites are rapidly-decreasing and one population in the Želivka SCI is already extinct. The main reasons for this decline are negative changes in habitat conditions: spreading of trees across dam and highway, enhancement of cover of competitive strong grasses or mosses and black waste dump. The forestry is problematic on Hadce u Hrnčíř SCI since it leads to formation of dense pine forests with high cover of needless. On both sites high humus layer was established. In such conditions, species bounded to serpentine substrate are quickly suppressed by competitively stronger plants. The second problems on both sites are plant collection and vandalism, which lead to direct devastation of individual plants.

The main aim of the project is to enhance population size of endemic priority species M.smeikalii by means of suppression of these key negative factors and setting up sustainable and feasible management of these sites.

The main aim is divided into 5 particular sub-aims, which focus on each negative factor and lead to fulfilling the main aim.

  1. Revitalization of natural sites by combination of various management approaches
  2. Establishment of self-sustainable ex-situ conservation in the Visitor center of Želivka SCI Vodní dům
  3. Direct enhancement of particular population size in the nature and species reintroduction
  4. The rescue planting in private gardens (involving of local people to direct plant protection)
  5. Enhancement of awareness about serpentine phenomenon and NATURA 2000 and dissemination of results on local as well as EU level by presentation on and organization of seminars, workshops, conference and preparation of an environmental education programme etc.

Cooperating institutions:
Czech Union for Nature Conservation (ČSOP)
Ministry of Environment of the Czech Republic

Principal investigator from the IB: RNDr. Hana Pánková, Ph.D.