Restoration of Tyruliai bog as a part of the initiative of the re-wetting of Lithuanian peatlands

The main objective of the project was to ensure the favourable conservation status of the priority bird species – Bittern (Botaurus stellaris), which breeds in dense reed stands flooded with water. Another breeding bird species – Spotted Crake (Porzana porzana), was also targeted. It prefers open fens with a dominance of sedge grasses, although it could also inhabit reed stands. The third target bird species in the project site was the migratory Common Crane (Grus grus), which uses the open wet areas for staging. The project actions involved the restoration of formerly open wet areas, which are important for waterbirds, focusing on re-wetting dry and degraded peatland areas and protecting the peatbog ecosystem itself. The concrete conservation actions were also targeted at the restoration and maintenance of open sedge-grass communities in order to improve habitat conditions for birds in different type of reed stands as well as protect the whole bog ecosystem from possible large scale fires which would negatively impact whole Tyruliai ecosystem. The project led to the recovery of a large part of formerly degraded peatland: over 50 dams were built above the draining pitches in former dry areas of the peatland communities. Thanks to these action,  typical bog vegetation started to reappear and Common Redshanks, Wood Sandpipers, Lapwings, Spotted Crakes, as well as other endangered birds began to breed here. Migratory cranes also now come to the area to roost.  Large scale peatland restoration action, implemented within the project, has significantly contributed to the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions from the area.

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