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Wintering Waterbirds in Albania

Results of International Waterbird Census, January 11-15, 2018

Report prepared by Dr. Taulant BINO

National Coordinator of IWC in Albania, Albanian Ornithological Society (AOS)

(9th of April 2018)

With the support of IPA 2013 Project “Strengthening National

Capacity in Nature Protection – Protection of Natura 2000”

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Acronyms
AOS – Albanian Ornithological Society
ASPBM – Albanian Society for the Protection of Birds and Mammals
APAWA – Association for the Protection of Aquatic Wildlife in Albania
AICS - Italian Agency for Development Cooperation
IUCN – International Union for Conservation of Nature
IWC – International Waterbird Census
LIPU – Lega Italiana Protezione Uccelli
NAPA – National Agency for Protected Areas
PPNEA – Protection and Preservation of Nature and Environment in Albania
RAPA – Regional Agency for Protected Areas
SBI - Societa Botanica Italiana

Citation:

Bino, T. 2018. Wintering Waterbirds in Albania, Results of International Waterbird Census, January 11-
15, 2018. NaturAL Project Report. Pp 25,

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Abstract
The International Waterbird Census (IWC) for 2018 was carried out during 11-15 of January 2018
through the support of the NaturAL Project (EU IPA program implemented by Italian Cooperation
in partnership with IUCN and SBI) and with the participation of circa 90 people including RAPA
staff and experts from different national and international NGOs and RAPA staff belonging to all
the 11 regions of Albania.
IWC 2018 covered 21 different wetland sites, 10 coastal wetlands and 11 fresh water lakes and
reservoirs. In total, 61 species of waterbirds were registered during the IWC 2018 in Albania with
a total number of 139,069 individuals. In addition, experts also noted the presence of the 22
Kingfishers, 198 Birds of prey (9 species), 4 Owls (1 species), 28 Pigeons (2 species), 4
Woodpeckers (2 species) and 4304 Passerines (43 different species).
The most frequent waterbird species is the Coot (Fulica atra) with circa 39 % of the total number
of waterbirds. It is followed by the Wigeon (Mareca penelope), Teal (Anas crecca), Common
Pochard (Aythya ferina) and Black-headed Gull (Croicocephalus ridibundus).
Divjake-Karavasta registered 46.165 individuals, reconfirming thus the status of the wetland site
with the highest number of wintering waterbirds. The highest index of biodiversity was
registered in Narta showing thus a good balance between the high number of waterbirds and
the high species diversity. This index proves also the importance of wetland habitats of Divjaka-
Karavasta, Butrinti and Patoku for the preservation of waterbirds in Albania.
In addition, the IWC offered some interesting sightings for a few other species including the first
confirmed wintering case of the Red-necked Phalarope (Phalaropus lobatus) in Albania,
reconfirmation of wintering for the Great Spotted Eagle (Clanga clanga) in Divjaka-Karavasta.

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Acknowledgements
On behalf of the coordination team, we would like to thank the National Agency for Protected
Areas that has contributed to organize the IWC in Albania with the support of NaturAL EU funded
project coordinated by Italian Agency for Development Cooperation.

Our special thanks go to RAPA staff for their commitment, logistical support and active
participation in IWC.

We would also like to highlight the professional contribution provided by our colleagues from
LIPU as well as several independent experts that have come to support IWC in Kune-Vain,
Karavasta, Butrint, Orikumi and Narta.

This activity needed the expertise and logistical support from Albanian Ornithological Society,
Albanian Society for the Protection of Birds and Mammals, Association for Protection of Aquatic
Wildlife in Albania, Protection and Preservation of Nature and Environment in Albania and we
thanks them all for this valuable contribution.

Finally, our warmest thanks go to every expert and participant for their contribution in the field
and for providing site based data for the IWC 2018 fieldwork.

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1. Background
The International Waterbird Census (IWC) is an international programme that is organized since 1967 and
is focuses on monitoring the status of waterbirds and wetlands. Albania joined IWC program in 1993 with
the assistance of foreign ornithologist and local capacities and since then the Waterbird census has been
undertaken almost every year, although with a limited number of experts due to the restricted national
capacities and funding on wildlife research. In 2018, the IWC program in Albania celebrated its 25th
birthday and it is enthusiastic to see that national capacities are steadily increasing and the program is
expanding to cover more wetlands sites.

As for 2016 and 2017, the coordination in 2018 was supported by IPA 2013 – Natura 2000 project
“Strengthening National Capacity in Nature Protection – Protection of Natura 2000”. In addition, the
project also funded the activity by covering transportation costs, food and accommodation for all the
participants. Within the Project objectives, this activity is part of the “on the job training” for the Protected
Areas staff, contributing thus to increase the capacities of Regional Administrations of Protected Areas
(Albania) in bird identification and bird monitoring.
Furthermore, the visibility campaign, ensured by the Project on behalf of NAPA, served to encourage
greater interest in waterbirds and wetlands amongst people, and thereby promote the conservation of
wetlands and waterbirds in Albania
Preliminary data collected for the IWC 2018 in Albania have already been provided to several interested
institutions including the Ministry of Environment, National Agency for Protected Areas, National
Environmental Agency and RAPAs directly involved in IWC. The detailed analysis presented in this report
would be public and available for reference by interested parties and stakeholders.
Furthermore, the data on waterbird and non-waterbird occurrence are also contributing to update and
enrich further the biodiversity database (BioNNA).

2. Participants
The census itself was undertaken by national and international experts representing national and
international organizations. Apart from being a census process per se the event served as on job training
for the staff of National Agency for Protected Areas (NAPA) and Regional Agencies for Protected Areas
(RAPA).
Overall, there were 5 NGOs, 10 RAPAs and 2 international organizations involved in the census (see Table
1). The teams were supported by 4 independent experts. In total, 92 persons, including experts and field
assistants were directly participating in the counts (see Annex 1 for a full list of participants).

Table 1: Organizations and bird experts directly involved in the IWC 2018 in Albania
Organizations Nr. of wetlands Covered Wetlands
covered

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AOS 13 Shkodra (Albanian part), Buna-Velipoja, Kune-Vain, Patoku, Lalzi Bay,
Shena-Vlash, Tirana lake, Karpen, Divjaka-Karavasta, Thana lake,
Semani, Belshi & Banja lakes.
APAWA 2 Shkodra lake (Albanian part), Vau i Dejes
ASPBM 6 Thana lake, Shena-Vlashi, Karpeni, Semani, Belshi & Banja lakes
IUCN 2 Kune-Vain and Divjaka-Karavasta
PPNEA 6 Narta, Orikumi, Butrinti and the Albanian part of Ohrid, Macro
Prespa and Micro Prespa,
RAPA Shkodër 2 Buna-Velipoja and the Albanian part of Shkodra lake
RAPA Kukës 1 Fierza lake
RAPA Dibër 2 Shkodra Lake (Albanian part), Vau i Dejws
RAPA Lezhë 2 Kune-Vain, Patoku
RAPA Durrës 2 Lalzi bay, Shena-Vlashi
RAPA Elbasan 2 Belshi lakes, Banja lake
RAPA Fier 2 Divjaka-Karavasta, Semani
RAPA Vlorë 3 Narta, Orikumi, Butrinti
RAPA Berat 1 Thana
RAPA Korçë 3 Albanian part of Ohrid, Macro Prespa and Micro Prespa lakes
NAPA 1 Divjaka-Karavasta

3. Sites covered during IWC 2018


In total 21 wetland sites were monitored during the 2018 IWC (Fig. 1) with two sites, Tirana lake and Vau
i Dejws Lake, covered for the first time. The sites covered included rivers, lakes, reservoirs, swamps,
coastal sites, lagoons, sandy beaches, etc.

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Figure 1: Wetlands covered by IWC 2018 in Albania

Among the 21 sites visited, 14 of them are already designated as IBAs (Table 2). Furthermore, 10 of the
sites belong to the network of Protected Areas in Albania.

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Table 2: Information on sites covered during IWC 2018 in Albania
National IWC
Nr. Sites IBA Code Date 2018 Observers Institutions involved
Code
12th of January, EXE, TMA, FBR, BAR & APAWA, AOS & RAPA
1 Buna-Velipoja AL00001 AL013
SZE Shkodër
MTO, LSE, ZVO, OSA, SCA,
th
13 of January KHY, XXH, ECE, KDU, FRU,
2 Narta (Vlora bay) AL00002 AL005 PPNEA & RAPA Vlorë
VMI, VGA, SHO, NHY, OCE
& ASE
3 Orikum (Vlora bay) AL00002 AL010 15th of January MTO PPNEA
TBI, AKO, CCA, OAV,
AOS, NaturAL Project,
MGU, CCE, AGU, MDU,
4 Divjaka-Karavasta AL00003 AL006 13th of January IUCN, LIPU & RAPA
EAL, FPR, EZE, FHO, OCA
Fier
& TMA
TBI, MGU, CCE, OAV, PTO, AOS, LIPU, IUCN,
th
5 Kune-Vain AL00004 AL007 14 of January KTO, PNO, EXE, CAC, NaturAL Project &
AGU, TOM, RXH & PST RAPA Lezhë
Lake Macro Prespa SSH, ODU, VMA, ELI, VJA
6 AL00005 AL003 13th of January PPNEA & RAPA Korçë
(Albanian part) & LSH
Lake Micro Prespa
7 AL00006 AL004 13th of January SSH, ODU, ELI & LSH PPNEA & RAPA Korçë
(Albanian part)
Lake Ohrid SSH, ODU, GBE, ESH, ABE
8 AL00007 AL002 14th of January PPNEA & RAPA Korçë
(Albanian Part) & LSH
11th of January, APAWA, AOS & RAPA
Lake Shkodra DUL, AZY, EXE, TMA
9 AL00008 AL001 Revisited on 12th Shkodër
(Albanian Part) & ADA, FBR, BAR & SZE
of January
TBI, NHE, HCE, SHP, BSE,
th
10 Lalzi bay AL00009 AL015 12 of January SCU, LEM, MKR, EHI & AOS & RAPA Durrës
ARA
TBI, NPJ, GJD, GJB, BSE, AOS, ASPBM &
11 Patok AL00011 AL014 12th of January
EHI & ARA RAPA Lezhë
FBE, APE, MMA, OCA & AOS, ASPBM, NaturAL
12 Semani AL00012 AL016 14th of January
EMI Project & RAPA Fier
FBE, MMA, APE, FNA, AOS, ASPBM, NaturAL
13 Thana AL00013 AL017 13th of January
FAL, EXH & JAB Project & RAPA Berat
MTO, LSE, ZVO, OSA, SCA,
14 Butrinti AL00014 012 14th of January PPNEA & RAPA Vlorë
KHY, XXH, ECE, KDU, VMI,
15 Karpen AL00015 - 14th of January GKA, EKO, GTA & FKO ASPBM & RAPA Tiranë
AOS, ASPBM, NaturAL
FBE, MMA, APE, HCE,
16 Shena-Vlash AL00016 - 14th of January Project & RAPA
DHO, ILI & TBI
Durrës
AOS, ASPBM, NaturAL
FBE, MMA, APE, FBR, JBA,
17 Belshi Lakes AL00017 - 13th of January Project & RAPA
OPO, ARO & AOZ
Elbasan

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AOS, ASPBM, NaturAL
th
FBE, MMA, APE, FBR, JBA,
18 Banja Lake AL00018 - 13 of January Project & RAPA
OPO, ARO & AOZ
Elbasan
BHA, APA, PSI, VRE & OMP Kukës & RAPA
19 Fierza Lake AL00019 - 13th of January
EMU Kukës
20 Vau i Dejes AL00020 - 12th of January DUL, AZY, FHA & MLE APAWA & RAPA Dibër

21 Tirana Lake AL00020 - 15th of January TBI, EXE & BSE AOS

4. Materials and Methods


The census took place within 11th-15th of January 2018, a period of time when populations of wintering
waterbirds seem more stable and attached to a particular site. They are gregarious and form groups of
different sizes facilitating the counting activity.
Each wetland site covered by IWC was divided in polygons using landmarks in the field and a site map on
a scale 1 : 25,000. Each polygon was covered by one or two counting points chosen in function of
accessibility, visibility and the best coverage of the area. The field observers tried to use the same counting
points as those being used in previous surveys.
Field observers were equipped with binoculars and spotting scopes and GPS devices. Those equipments
were used for direct counts as well as estimations in accordance with the methodology provided by Bibby
et al. 2000.
For each site different parameters were collected including the number of species and the number of
individuals per each species, weather conditions etc.
All species of waterbirds associated with wetlands and other wetland dependent birds were entered into
standardised count forms that were delivered to the National Coordinator.
Finally the waterbird data registered for each site were compared with other sites in terms of the total
number of birds, total number of species and the Shannon-Wiener diversity index.

5. IWC 2018 Detailed Results and Discussion

5.1. Bird numbers during IWC 2018


In total, there were 61 species of waterbirds registered during the IWC 2018 in Albania with a total number
of 139,069 individuals.

Coots (Fulica atra) compose the most dominant group representing circa 40 % of the observed waterbirds.
The other dominant groups are represented by Ducks and Waders respectively with 32,9 % and the 11 %
of the total number (Table 3). Those three groups only are responsible for almost 84 % of the total number
of waterbirds. Similar to the census of other years, there are numerous Gulls (6,3 %), Cormorants (almost
2,8 %), Flamingos (2,7 %.), Grebes (2,5 %), Herons (almost 1 %.), Pelicans (almost 0,1 %), Swans (0,03 %)
and Terns (0,14 %). For a more detailed list of birds and their abundance see Annex 2.

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Besides for waterbirds, the visited wetlands are an important ground for other species. Among them is
worth mentioning the presence of 9 species of birds of prey with a total number of 197 individuals (Annex
3), 31 Kingfishers (Alcedo atthis), three Little Owls (Athene noctua), six Lesser Spotted Woodpeckers
(Dendrocopus minor) and 42 species of Passerines.

The most common among the 9 raptor species was the Marsh Harrier (Circus aeruginosus) with circa 47,3
% of the birds of prey and the Common Buzzard (Buteo buteo) with 31,2 % of the birds of prey. Buzzards
were almost evenly distributed all over the territory while the Marsh Harriers were concentrated in and
nearby reedbeds. The roosting site of Marsh Harrier in the southern part of Kune-Vain was reconfirmed.

Table 3: Major groups of wintering birds during IWC 2017 in Albania.


Main Taxa 2018 Nb. of individuals Nb. of species Comparative %
Divers 7 1 0.01
Grebes 3442 3 2.48
Cormorants 3860 2 2.78
Pelicans 230 1 0.17
Herons 1494 5 1.07
Spoonbills 76 1 0.05
Flamingos 3776 1 2.72
Swans 36 2 0.03
Dabbling ducks 36507 7 26.25
Diving ducks 9252 9 6.65
Unidentified ducks 60 0 0.04
Coots, Moorhens and Rails 54991 3 39.54
Waders 15246 17 10.96
Unidentified Shanks 167 0 0.12
Unidentified Sandpipers 750 0 0.54
Gulls 8808 7 6.33
Unidentified Gulls 120 0 0.09
Terns 201 2 0.14
Unidentified waterbirds 46 0 0.03
Total Waterbirds 139069 61
Birds of prey 201 9
Kingfishers 22 1

The most frequent species in the Albanian wetlands is the Coot (Fulica atra) with circa 39,5 % of the total
number of waterbirds (Fig. 2). It is followed by the Wigeon (Mareca penelope) with 11,5%, the Teal (Anas

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creca) with 8,8, %, the Common Pochard (Aythya ferina) with 5,2 % and Black-headed Gull (Croicocephalus
ridibundus) with 4,9 %.

Figure 2. M ost common waterbird species during IWC 2018 in Albania

Larus michahellis
Larus genei
Podiceps nigricollis
Anas acuta
Microcarbo pygmeus
Tadorna tadorna
Pluvialis squatarola
Podiceps cristatus
Aythya fuligula
Anas platyrhynchos
Phalacrocorax carbo
Spatula clypeata
Phoenicopterus ruber roseus
Calidris alpina
Vanellus vanellus
Croicocephalus ridibundus
Aythya ferina
Anas crecca
Mareca penelope
Fulica atra

0 10000 20000 30000 40000 50000 60000

With regards to the sites visited, Divjaka-Karavasta National Park registered 46,165 individuals the highest
number of waterbirds with (Fig. 3). It is followed by Kune-Vain (Drin delta) with 22,634 individuals, the
Albanian parts of Lake Shkodra with 19.020 waterbirds, Macro Prespa with 12,117 and Ohrid Lake with
9,421 individuals (see Annex 2).

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Figure 3. Number of waterbirds registered in all the wetland sites (IWC 2018)
50000
45000
40000
35000
30000
25000
20000
15000
10000
5000
0

The highest number of waterbird species, 46 in total, was recorded in Divjakë-Karavasta. Other important
sites in terms of waterbird diversity are Narta with 36 species, Kune-Vain with 31 species, Butrint and Lalzi
with 29 species each (Table 4).

Table 4: Waterbirds registered during IWC 2018 in Albania

Nr. Wetland sites Number of waterbirds No. of species


1 Karavasta 46165 46
2 Kune-Vain 22606 31
3 Shkoder 19020 23
4 Macro Prespa 12117 25
5 Ohri 9421 23
6 Narta 8246 36
7 Thana 6756 22
8 Butrinti 4003 29
9 Lalzi 3174 29
10 Orikumi 1994 19
11 Bune-Velipoje 1562 21
12 Patoku 1077 18
13 Fierza 928 13
14 Tirana lake 571 6

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15 Vau i Dejes 562 5
16 Micro Prespa 355 12
17 Shena-Vlash 253 12
18 Karpen 108 7
19 Semani 64 12
20 Banja 61 6
21 Belshi 26 6
Total Albania 139069 61

The highest biodiversity index was calculated in Narta wetland site (Fig. 4) where the most divers part
remain the salinas of Narta. Other sites with particularly high diversity are Karavasta, Butrinti, Patoku and
Lalzi.

Figure 4. Shannon-Wiever Index for Wetland Sites IWC 2018


3

2.5

1.5

0.5

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5.2. Observations of particular interest
IWC 2018 offered some interesting field observations:
(i) The presence of a wintering individual of the Broad-billed Phalarope (Phalaropus lobatus) in Lalzi was
considered as a very rare observation as the species presence in winter is rather unusual in Albania
and in the Balkans.
(ii) The reobservation of the the Globally Endangered Species of the Great Spotted Eagle (Clanga clanga)
in Divjaka is of particular interest. Its presence shows that now Divjaka is a regular wintering ground
for the rare and endangered species and
(iii) The reconfirmation of a wintering Ospray (Pandion haliaetus) in Divjaka-Karavasta
(iv) Substantial increase of waterbird numbers in Kune-Vain and Divjaka-Karavasta.

Figure 5. Reconfirmation of the wintering Great Spotted Eagle (left) and Osprey (right)

5.3. Comparative analysis of waterbirds and wetland sites during 2016-2018


Relevant fluctuations are noticed at site level during the IWC in 2016-2018. Divjake-Karavasta and Shkodra
lake maintain their position as top sites for waterbirds (respectively 46,165 or 33%, 19,020 or 14%). This
year a surprising large number of birds was recorded in Kune Vain (22,606 or 16%) compared to 5,243
individuals or 5% of the overall number of birds in 2016.
Divjaka-Karavasta and Kune-Vain are the only two national wetland areas where it was registered a
relevant increase of the number of waterbirds. This confirms that a better control and site management
pays off in terms of reduced human disturbance and increased waterbird number.

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Table 5. Waterbirds registered during IWC 2016-2018 in Albania

IWC 2016 IWC 2017 IWC 2018


No. Sites
Individuals Species Individuals Species Individuals Species
1 Karavasta 15,653 41 39,999 51 46,165 46
2 Kune-Vain 5,243 28 7,009 36 22,606 31
3 Lake_Shkodra 25,620 21 38,628 21 19,020 23
4 Macro Prespa 15,730 22 21,127 24 12,117 25
5 Ohri 9,334 16 16,069 20 9,421 23
6 Narta 10,672 34 8,665 40 8,246 36
7 Thana 6,080 24 6,687 22 6,756 22
8 Butrinti 2,986 26 6,113 33 4,003 29
9 Lalzi 1,855 17 12,526 30 3,174 29
10 Orikumi 1,138 16 2,966 22 1,994 19
11 Buna-Velipoja 988 20 1,522 18 1,562 21
12 Patok 2,250 20 1,335 20 1,077 18
13 Fierza 1,056 14 928 13
14 Liqeni i Tiranes - - - - 571 6
15 Vau i Dejes - - - - 562 5
16 Micro Prespa 272 9 0 0 355 12
17 Shena-Vlash 468 14 418 14 253 12
18 Karpen 111 6 59 6 108 7
19 Semani 164 10 640 9 64 12
20 Banja - - 270 15 61 6
21 Belshi - - 179 13 26 6
Grand Total 98,564 60 165,268 64 139,069 61

In terms of species diversity, Divjaka Karavasta is yet on top, giving evidence of the importance of its
wetland ecosystem and habitats. Additionally, Narta, Kune Vain and Butrinti have recorded more than 25
different bird species. This means that habitat diversification is of paramount importance for offering food
and resources to different animal species.
In difference from the natural habitats, the artificial reservoirs or highly impacted lakes like Vau i Dejws,
Banja, Karpen, Belshi and Tirana Lake have the lowest biodiversity levels with only 5-7 species recorded.

5.4. Multiannual trend of wintering waterbirds in Albania


A comparison between years with the same coverage and methodology shows that the number of
139,069 birds counted in 2018 is 15.9 % less than the numbers counted in 2017 and 11.2 % less compared
with the multiannual average of 156,634 individuals for the past 20 years.

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Figu r e 6. Evo lu tio n of th e n u m b er of water b ir d s in Alb an ia
(IWC d ata 1996-2018)
300000
y = -4647.5x + 226889
250000 R² = 0.4865
Nb. of Waterbirds

200000

150000

100000

50000

YEARS

Based on the figures collected since the beginning of IWC in Albania, it seems that the overall trend in
wintering waterbirds in Albania seems negative (Fig. 6). This might depend from several plausible factors
including:

 Habitat degradation.
This phenomenon goes on together with problems accompanying the urbanization of the wetland sites
and their vicinities. Several wetlands suffer today from increased discharges of sewage water, agricultural
water and industrial plants bringing increased levels of eutrophication. Reduced entrance of clean fresh
water from inland waters and/or oxygenated salted water from the sea has been also problematic in
certain wetlands increasing thus the salinity of the wetland ecosystems and making them less used by
waterbirds.

Some other wetland types as reedbeds, tamarix marshlands and temporary marshes are under intensive
pressure including burning for opening new pastures, overgrazing, logging and induced drought. The
above activities reduce their potential as useful habitats for waterbirds.

 Dramatic changes in habitat use


Drastic changes have happened since the 90-s to the surrounding habitats with new patterns of
development regarding urban areas and agriculture. The use of the arable plots has differed either with
scarce human settlements, abandonment of former agricultural practices or intensification of other
activities. Due to such changes, the habitats surrounding wetlands are not the same and it is likely to have
affected also the waterbird species in Albania. In order to shed more light on this hypothesis waterbird
populations estimates for Albania should be compared further with the changes occurring in the
surrounding landscape.

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 Habitat loss.
Habitat loss has been an important factor for the period 1950-1970 with many natural coastal wetlands
and continental marshes being reclaimed to agricultural land. This problem has been resurfacing in limited
scale after the 1990’s due to lack of authorities’ control over the territory and the development of
different urban activities. This is the case in Patoku, Shkodra lake, Kune-Vain, Karpen, Macro Prespa etc.

Unfortunately, the last two years are witnessing new threats in the form of aggressive tourism pressure.
The National Park of Divjaka-Karavasta, the most Important Area in Albania for waterbirds is threatened
by plans being discussed for the development of a new urban area at the core area of the national park.
The Landscape Protected Area of Vjose-Narta is also threatened by plans for the development of an
airport to serve the tourism industry in the southern part of the country. Both developments will
jeopardize the wetlands and their availability as important habitats for waterbirds.

 Human disturbance and illegal killing of birds


Human disturbance is an over prevailing issue and should be tackled through improving the current
management of wetland protected areas in order to create safe sheltering grounds for waterbirds.

Despite the drastic improvement compared with the past, Illegal killing of watebirds is still common in
wetland areas with particular emphasis to sites as Lalzi, Patoku, Shena Vlash, Bune-Velipoja, Karpen,
Thana, Semani and Shkodra lake.

 Mild weather
It is largely believed that the milder weather during the recent years was behind the reduced number of
waterbirds. Nevertheless this kind of argument need to be verified at a larger scale and compared with
data from other countries in order to gain further support.

The 2018 IWC data from Divjaka- Karavasta and Kune-Vain somehow contradict the above hypothesis.
Both sites registered more birds than in 2017 despite the weather being milder than the end of 2016 and
the beginning of 2017. The figures of those two sites prove that a good site management and above all
control of illegal killing of birds is crucial for the number of wintering waterbirds.

6. Closing Remarks
The International Waterbird Census 2018 in Albania was again a successful and cooperative effort taking
into account the high number of participants and the larger territory covered compared with 2017. The
event is considered also as on job training for the RAPA staff and the involved volunteers becoming thus
instrumental in increasing technical capacities in the country for fauna monitoring.

The number of waterbirds registered during the IWC 2018 unfortunately reconfirms the negative trend of
waterbirds in Albania since 1996 and stressing the need for the preservation of wetland habitats from loss
and degradation. The observed trend is similar to different waterbirds’ populations in the Balkans
(Wetlands International multiannual comparative analysis). Nevertheless understanding the real reasons
for such a trend it is imperative to undertake additional analysis at site or species level.

17
The team of experts that contributed for the preparation of this report would be available for further and
detailed analysis on species trends and measures needed to be undertaken by authorities responsible on
conservation and management of wetland areas and their biodiversity.

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Annex 1. List of experts and participants in IWC 2017 in Albania
Nr. Participants at IWC 2017 in Albania Organizations
1 Agim Dardha (ADA) RAPA Shkodër
2 A. Bego (ABE) RAPA Korcë
3 Alfredo Guillet (AGU) NaturAL Project IPA 2013-Natura 2000
4 Altin Ozuni (AOZ) RAPA Elbasan
5 Andrea Rapo (ARA) AOS
6 Arben Palushi (APA) OMP Kukës
7 Ardian Koci (AKO) RAPA Fier
8 Armela Roçi (ARO) RAPA Elbasan
9 Artenisa Peculaj (APE) Natural Project
10 Artion Seferi (ASE) RAPA Vlorë
11 Aurora Zylaj (AZY) APAWA
12 Besjana Sevo (BSE) AOS
13 Besnik Hallaci (BHA) RAPA Kukës
14 Bledar Ara (BAR) RAPA Shkodër
15 Caterica Carugati (CCA) NaturAL Project IPA 2013-Natura 2000
16 Claudio Celada (CCE) LIPU
17 David Horal (DHO) Independent expert
18 Denik Ulqini (DUL) APAWA
19 Dorian Nasi (DNA) RAPA Fier
20 Edison Xhaferi (EXH) RAPA Berat
21 Emërli Murtati (EMU) RAPA Kukës
22 Endora Ҫelohoxhaj (ECE) PPNEA
23 Enea Zenuni (EZE) RAPA Fier
24 Erald Xeka (EXE) AOS
25 Erind Mine (EMI) RAPA Fier
26 Ermal Shaho (ESH) RAPA Korcë
27 Ervin Allushi (EAL) RAPA Fier
28 Ervin Lico (ELI) RAPA Korcë
29 Esmerina Hidri (EHI) AOS
30 Fatmir Brazhda (FBR) RAPA Elbasan
31 Fatmir Kryeziu (FKR) NAPA
32 Fatos Nako (FNA) RAPA Berat
33 Ferdinand Bego (FBE) AOS
34 Festim Broja (FBR) RAPA Shkodër
35 Festim HOXHA (FHO) RAPA Fier
36 Flogert Haslika (FHA) RAPA Dibër
37 Florian Rustemi (FRU) RAPA Vlorë
38 Florjan Allajbeu (FAL) RAPA Berat
39 Fotjon Premce (FPR) RAPA Fier

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40 Gani Bego (GBE) RAPA Korcë
41 Gjergj Dedaj (GJD) RAPA Lezhë
42 Gjok Bici (GJB) ASPBM
43 Gramoz Murrizi (GMO) RAPA Fier
44 Haki Balliu (HBA) RAPA Durrës
45 Halim Celmani (HCE) RAPA Durrës
46 Ivan Literak (ILI) Independent expert
47 Julian Balla (JBA) RAPA Elbasan
48 Jurgen Abedini (JAB) RAPA Berat
49 Kasem Uzuni (KUZ) NAPA
50 Klea Duro (KDU) PPNEA
51 Kliton Hysollari (KHY) PPNEA
52 Kreshnik Toni (KTO) RAPA Lezhë
53 Laura Shumka (LSH) PPNEA
54 Ledi Emiri (LEM) RAPA Durrës
55 Louis Seiller (LSE) Independent expert
56 Maringlen Lena (MLE) RAPA Dibër
57 Marco Gustin (MGU) LIPU
58 Matilda Duri (MDU) NaturAL Project
59 Mikaela Mahilaj (MMA) ASPBM
60 Mirjan Topi (MTO) PPNEA
61 Myslym Kruta (MKR) RAPA Durrës
62 Naim Herri (NHE) RAPA Durrës
63 Nexhip Hysolakoj (NHY) RAPA Vlorë
64 Ndoc Pjetri RAPA Lezhë
65 Odise Ҫeloaliaj (OCE) RAPA Vlorë
66 Oliver Avramovski (OAV) IUCN
67 Olsi Cauli (OCA) RAPA Fier
68 Olsi Duma (ODU) RAPA Korce
69 Oresta Saliaj (OSA) PPNEA
70 Ornela Poçi RAPA Elbasan
71 Pashk Noka (PNO) RAPA Lezhë
72 Paolo Strati (PST) AOS
73 Pjetër Toni (PTO) RAPA Lezhë
74 Petrit Sinaj (PSI) RAPA Kukës
75 Ramiz Xhurxhi (RXH) AOS
76 Sabina Cano (SCA) PPNEA
77 Shefqet Paja (SHP) RAPA Durrës
78 Shyqyri Hoxhaj (SHO) RAPA Vlore
79 Silvana Zenelaj (SZE) RAPA Shkodër
80 Skënder Cufa RAPA Durrës

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81 Spase Shumka (SSH) PPNEA
82 Taulant Bino (TBI) AOS
83 Toni Malko (TOM) Natural Project
84 Tonin Macaj (TMA) RAPA Shkodër
85 Valdet Rexha (VRE) RAPA Kukës
86 Vasil Jankulla (VJA) RAPA Korcë
87 Vasil Male (VMA) RAPA Korcë
88 Viktor Minga (VMI) RAPA Vlorë
89 Vincent Djaloshi (VDJ) RAPA Durrës
90 Vladimir Ganaj (VGA) RAPA Vlorë
91 Zydjon Vorpsi (ZVO) PPNEA
92 Xhemal Xherri (XXH) PPNEA

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Annex 2. Waterbirds registered in Albania during IWC 2018
Nr. Scientific name Albanian name English name D-K B-V SH K-V PA GJL SHV KA FI SE THA BE BA NA OR BU OH PRM PRV VD LT Total
1 Gavia arctica Nori gushëzi Black-throated Diver 5 2 7
2 Tachybaptus ruficollis Kredharaku i vogël Little Grebe 43 18 185 89 5 2 130 9 8 3 23 156 123 9 42 37 882
3 Podiceps cristatus Kredharaku i madh Great Crested Grebe 77 1 868 34 2 2 13 9 14 31 17 23 214 167 1472
4 Podiceps nigricollis Kredharaku gushëzi Black-necked Grebe 12 49 97 198 19 3 2 1 40 42 90 465 67 1 2 1088
5 Phalacrocorax carbo Karabullaku i detit Cormorant 569 33 517 73 19 2 1 1 120 3 57 4 8 161 91 746 32 84 42 1 2564
6 Microcarbo pygmeus Karabullaku i vogël Pygmy Cormorant 338 7 393 75 6 4 8 4 74 135 98 58 95 1 1296
7 Pelecanus crispus Pelikani kacurrel Dalmatian Pelican 120 5 4 6 56 33 1 5 230
8 Botaurus stellaris Gakthi Bittern 2 2
9 Bubulcus ibis Capka lopcare Cattle Egret 5 5
10 Egretta garzetta Capka e bardhë e vogël Little Egret 178 2 62 80 8 32 2 5 7 44 7 14 1 2 1 445
11 Ardea alba Capka e madhe e bardhë Great White Egret 333 4 5 63 5 11 1 2 1 17 59 25 21 1 2 550
12 Ardea cinerea Capka e përhime Grey Heron 74 2 59 42 4 28 1 40 1 17 1 64 105 39 3 6 1 5 492
13 Platalea leucorodia Capka sqeplugë Spoonbill 6 3 39 28 76
14 Phoenicopterus roseus Lejleku krahëkuq Flamingo 2571 94 14 1042 55 3776
15 Cygnus olor Mjelma me xhungë Mute Swan 4 23 6 33
16 Cygnus cygnus Mjelma qafëdrejtë Whooper Swan 3 3
17 Tadorna tadorna Laroshja Shellduck 1241 35 9 2 30 1 1318
18 Mareca penelope Kryekuqe e madhe Wigeon 14263 469 706 263 241 23 14 15979
19 Mareca strepera Rosa e përhime Gadwall 440 77 2 2 103 4 3 631
20 Anas crecca Rosa këre Teal 7994 2 2 1282 17 161 22 29 1986 102 528 89 12214
21 Anas platyrhynchos Kuqla qafëgjelber Mallard 519 1 49 23 3 10 349 234 417 43 103 27 9 1787
22 Anas acuta Rosa bishtgjelë Pintail 1025 217 4 2 26 8 7 1289
23 Spatula clypeata Sqepluga Shoveler 2770 1 368 9 3 3 127 6 2 3289
24 Netta rufina Murrcaku Red-crested Pochard 1 3 51 8 63
25 Aythya ferina Kryekuqe e mjeme Pochard 422 3 2479 2610 19 67 1 1008 4 418 255 7286
26 Aythya nyroca Kryekuqe e vogël Feruginous Duck 7 2 9
27 Aythya fuligula Rosa laramane me cafkë Tufted Duck 383 45 9 3 840 445 1725
33 Melanitta fusca Rosa e zezë krahëbardhë Velvet Scoter 4 4
34 Bucephala clangula Rosa me katër sy Goldeneye 1 22 12 3 38
35 Mergellus albellus Zhytësi i vogël laraman Smew 5 2 7
36 Mergus serrator Zhytësi i mesëm me callmë Red-breasted Merganser 40 38 4 12 1 95
37 Mergus merganser Zhytësi i mesëm Goosander 14 2 16
38 Mergus sp. Zhytës Mergansers 9 9
39 Anatidae sp. Rosa Ducks 20 40 60
40 Rallus aquaticus Gjeli i ujit Water Rail 18 3 1 5 1 1 29
41 Gallinula chloropus Pulëza e ujit Moorhen 3 10 3 2 26 1 2 3 2 1 31 84
42 Fulica atra Bajza Coot 6587 242 12656 15930 2 7 109 2 14 332 1070 6299 10538 92 499 499 54878

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43 Haematopus ostralegus Laraska e detit Oystercatsher 2 2 4
44 Vanellus vanellus Gicvilja Lapwing 245 156 33 3720 1667 32 600 6453
45 Recurvirostra avosetta Sqepbiza Avocet 5 200 205
46 Charadrius alexandrinus Vraponjësi gushëbardhë Kentish Plover 303 8 11 8 1 3 81 415
47 Pluvialis apricaria Gjelaci pikalosh ngjyrë ari Goden Plover 12 21 33
48 Pluvialis squatarola Gjelëza pikaloshe Grey Plover 327 12 184 46 835 1404
49 Calidris minuta Gjelaci i vogël Little Stint 596 24 41 661
50 Calidris alpina Gjelëza gushëzezë Dunlin 3416 6 65 648 320 492 4947
51 Calidris sp. Gjelacë Plovers 750 750
52 Philomachus pugnax Luftëtari Ruff 7 7
53 Gallinago gallinago Shapka e ujit Snipe 3 1 3 1 8
54 Numenius arquata Kojliku i madh European Curlew 266 6 175 168 27 51 693
55 Tringa erythropus Qyrylyku i murrmë Spotted Redshank 11 109 1 121
56 Tringa totanus Qyrylyku këmbëqirizë Redshank 65 1 5 8 1 1 155 28 264
57 Tringa nebularia Qyrylyku i madh Greenshank 5 1 7 2 15
58 Tringa ochropus Qyrylyku këmbëpërhimë Green Sandpiper 2 1 1 1 5
59 Actitis hypoleucos Qyrylyku i vogël Common Sandpiper 3 2 1 3 1 10
60 Tringa sp. Qyrylykë Sandpipers 167 167
61 Phalaropus lobatus Gjelëza sqephollë Red-necked Phalarope 1 1
62 Larus melanocephalus Pulëbardha kokëzezë Mediterranean Gull 1 1
63 Larus minutus Pulëbardha e vogël Little Gull 7 7
64 Croicocephalus ridibundus Pulëbardha e zakonshme Black-headed Gull 694 688 1184 646 493 1170 30 8 244 26 45 1 23 473 10 106 721 219 55 15 6851
65 Larus genei Pulëbardha rozë Slender-billed Gull 465 558 1023
66 Larus canus Pulëbardha e përhime Common Gull 1 1
67 Larus michahellis Pulëbardha këmbëverdhë Yellow-legged Gull 66 435 60 24 13 16 2 1 20 12 240 17 11 5 922
68 Larus cachinnans Pulbardha e Kaspikut Caspian Gull 3 3
69 Larus sp. Pulbardha Gulls 5 115 120
70 Hydroprogne caspia Dallëndyshe deti e madhe Caspian Tern 7 7
71 Thalasseus sandvicensis Sterni dimërak Sandwich Tern 18 6 92 17 1 60 194
72 Aves sp. Shpendë uji të papërcakuar Undentified waterbirds 46 46
73 TOTALAves Total Shpendë uji Total Waterbirds 46165 1562 19020 22606 1077 3174 253 108 928 64 6756 26 61 8246 1994 4003 9421 12117 355 562 571 139069

SH – Shkodra lake (Albanian part), FI – Fierza Lake (Kukws) BV – Bune-Velipoja, KV – Kune-Vain, PA – Patok, GJL – Gjiri i Lalzit, SHV – Shena-Vlash, KA – Karpen, DK –
Divjake-Karavasta, SE – Seman, TH – Thana lake, BE – Belshi lakes, BA – Banja Lake, NA – Narta, OR – Orikum, BU – Butrint, OH – Ohrid lake (Albanian part), PRM –
Macro Prespa (Albanian part), PRV – Micro Prespa (Albanian part), VD – Vau i Dejes, LT – Lake of Tirana

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Annex 3. Birds of prey and other wetland birds registered in Albania during IWC 2018
Nr. Scientific name Albanian name English name D-K B-V SH K-V PA GJL SHV KA FI SE THA BE BA NA OR BU OH PRM PRV VD LT Total
1 Circus aeruginosus Shqipja e kënetës Marsh Harrier 22 1 47 5 2 1 3 3 7 1 2 1 95
2 Circus cyaneus Shqipja e fushës Hen Harrier 10 2 1 1 1 15
3 Accipiter nisus Gjeraqina e shkurtës Sparrowhawk 5 6 2 1 1 15
4 Buteo buteo Huta Common Buzzard 21 5 7 2 1 1 1 11 2 10 1 2 64
5 Milvus migrans Huta e zeze bishtgershere Black Kite 1 1
6 Clanga clanga Shqiponja e madhe e rosave Greater Spotted Eagle 1 1
7 Pandion haliaetus Shqiponja peshkngrenese Osprey 1 1
8 Falco tinnunculus Skifteri kthetrazi Kestrel 3 1 1 1 6
9 Falco peregrinus Krahëthati Peregrine Falcon 2 1 3
10 Columba livia Pellumbi i eger i shkembit Rock Dove 13 13
11 Streptopelia decaocto Kumuria Collared Dove 7 2 2 4 15
12 Athene noctua Kukuvajka Little Owl 3 1 4
13 Alcedo atthis Bilbili peshkatar Kingfisher 9 2 1 1 2 2 1 2 1 1 22
14 Dendrocopos major Qukapiku larosh i madh Great Spotted Woodpecker 1 1
15 Dendrocopos minor Qukapiku larosh i vogël Lesser Spotted Woodpecker 1 1 1 3
16 Galerida cristata Dervishi Crested Lark 80 14 12 1 1 3 111
17 Lullula arborea Drenja Woodlark 15 4 19
18 Alauda arvensis Lauresha Skylark 55 60 115
19 Melanocorypha calandra Drenja e madhe qafezeze Calandra Lark 1 1
20 Anthus pratensis Drenja e luadhit Meadow Pipit 21 1 4 2 28
21 Anthus spinoletta Drenja e malit Water Pipit 34 25 1 3 4 67
22 Motacilla alba Bishtatundësi i bardhë Pied Wagtail 28 53 1 2 4 3 3 7 3 5 5 114
23 Motacilla cinerea Bishtatundesi i perhime Grey Wgtail 4 7 2 1 1 15
24 Cinclus cinclus Mellenja e ujit Dipper 2 2
25 Troglodytes troglodytes Cerri Wren 20 1 3 8 32
26 Prunella modularis Dredhuesi gushëpërhime Dunnock 6 2 2 10
27 Erithacus rubecula Gushëkuqi Robin 17 1 2 4 14 38
33 Phoenicurus ochruros Bishtkuqi zeshkan Black Redstart 16 1 1 3 21
34 Saxicola rubicola Ceku kokëzi Stonechat 7 9 4 2 22
35 Turdus merula Mëllenja Balck Bird 20 1 1 1 5 28
36 Turdus viscivorus Tusha e malit Mistle Thrush 2 1 1 4
37 Cettia cetti Bilbili i kenetave Cetti's Warbler 15 1 4 5 3 28
38 Acrocephalus melanopogon Bilbilthi me mustaqe Moustached Warbler 2 2
39 Sylvia melanocephala Bilbilthi kokëzi gushëbardhë Sardinian Warbler 3 1 4

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40 Sylvia atricapilla Bilbilthi kokëzi Blackcap 13 1 1 5 20
41 Phylloscopus collybita Fishkëllyesi i vogël Chiffchaff 13 1 38 2 54
42 Regulus regulus Mbretëthi Goldcrest 10 1 1 12
43 Regulus ignicapillus Mbretëthi vetullverdhë Firecrest 4 2 6
44 Aegithalos caudatus Trishtili bishtgjatë Long-tailed Tit 39 6 3 48
45 Cyanistes caeruleus Trishtili i kaltër Blue Tit 8 4 3 12 27
46 Parus major Trishtili i madh Great Tit 15 1 2 2 9 29
47 Remiz pendulinus Kolovatësi Penduline Tit 7 1 6 14
48 Pica pica Laraska bishtgjatë Magpie 25 23 12 1 10 7 3 11 92
49 Corvus cornix Sorra Hooded Crow 19 2 1 2 3 14 40 7 1 89
50 Sturnus vulgaris Cërloi i zi pikalosh Starling 133 2500 1 5 2639
51 Passer domesticus Harabeli House Sparrow 85 5 15 6 111
52 Passer hispaniolensis Harabeli gjokszi Spanish Sparrow 30 30
53 Passer montanus Harabeli i fushës Field Sparrow 12 1 13
54 Fringilla coelebs Zboraks Chaffinch 75 1 10 14 3 15 118
55 Serinus serinus Zog bari sqepshkurtër Serin 29 29
56 Carduelis chloris Verduni Greenfinch 20 1 2 3 26
57 Carduelis carduelis Gardalina Goldfinch 97 5 11 7 9 129
58 Carduelis cannabina Kërpngrënësi Linnet 53 1 14 68
59 Emberiza cirlus Cërla gushëgjelbër Cirl Bunting 11 3 14
60 Emberiza schoeniclus Cërla e kallamishteve Reed Bunting 10 5 28 43
61 Miliaria calandra Cërla e zakonshme Corn Bunting 25 2 27
62 Certhia brachydactyla Rrotulluesi gishtshkurter Short-toed Treecreeper 3 3
63 Sitta europea Zvarritesi i zakonshem European Nuthatch 2 2
64 Total Aves Non-Aquaticus Total Shpende Jo-Uji Total Non-Waterbirds 1164 2592 32 165 0 0 197 5 7 11 4 98 10 18 6 21 23 50 13 1 146 4563

SH – Shkodra lake (Albanian part), FI – Fierza Lake (Kukws) BV – Bune-Velipoja, KV – Kune-Vain, PA – Patok, GJL – Gjiri i Lalzit, SHV – Shena-Vlash, KA – Karpen, DK –
Divjake-Karavasta, SE – Seman, TH – Thana lake, BE – Belshi lakes, BA – Banja Lake, NA – Narta, OR – Orikum, BU – Butrint, OH – Ohrid lake (Albanian part), PRM –
Macro Prespa (Albanian part), PRV – Micro Prespa (Albanian part), VD – Vau i Dejes, LT – Lake of Tirana

25