Garla Mare


Garla Mare Fish Farm on the lower Danube in Romania is one of the wetland areas that has been identified by WWF for its potential for restoration. Re-connecting the wetlands to the Danube channel will not only enhance the biological value of the area, but also contribute to flood and water management in the area. Preparatory work for restoration of the area has been undertaken with support from the Coca-Cola Company.

The selection of the site was preceded by a scoping study  and a restoration plan to assess the potential of several areas. The assessment was based on a set of criteria including nature conservation priorities, stakeholder involvement and flood risk mitigation.

The natural connection of Garla Mare marsh to the Danube was cut off by dikes, and the area was turned into fish breeding nursery and fishing ponds (nowadays mostly abandoned).

The plan is to remove the dikes and reintroduce a natural hydrologic regime. This will lead to the development of local vegetation; wildlife will repopulate deserted ponds. The Garla Mare area is also in need of ecological restoration to remove pollution sources from agriculture and waste management.

Garla Mare is an important Natura 2000 site. Garla Mare hosts 19 bird species protected under the EU’s Birds Directive, 89 bird species protected under the Bonn Convention and 6 globally endangered bird species. The Garla Mare model site is important for the wintering of Phalacrocorax pygmeus, Aythya nyroca and Aythya ferina. The site is also important during the bird migration period. 


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WWF staff

Occupation: WWF staff
Location: Bulgaria


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Garla Mare | Romania | wetland restoration | wetland | floodplain | WWF | The Coca Cola Company