Project acronym: LIFE AMPHICON
Project reference: LIFE18 NAT/SI/000711
Year of financing: 2018
Priority area: Nature & Biodiversity
Project title (SL): Ohranjanje dvoživk in obnova njihovih habitatov
Coordinating beneficiary: Municipality of Grosuplje
Start date: 1/11/2019
End date: 31/12/2026

Amphibians are most endangered vertebrate group in Slovenia and in Europe. The project primary focus is the decline in amphibian populations, which is the result of loss, fragmentation and destruction of suitable habitats and furthermore reduction of their connectivity. Amphibians often have to cross roads during spring and autumn migrations and more than 100,000 animals are dead each year on Slovenian roads.

The project objective is to improve the conservation status of amphibian target species in 6 Natura 2000 sites: in Slovenia (Ljubljansko barje, Radensko polje – Viršnica, Dobrava – Jovsi and Bohor), Denmark (Søer ved Tårup og Klintholm) and Germany (Felchowseegebiet). The target species are European fire-bellied toad (Bombina bombina), Yellow-bellied toad (Bombina variegata) and Italian crested newt (Triturus carnifex), all listed in Annex II of the Habitat Directive, for which Natura 2000 sites are designated. The planned measures will also improve the conservation status of species listed in Annex IV of the Habitat Directive – Moor frog (Rana arvalis), Agile frog (R. dalmatina) and European tree frog (Hyla arborea) and the conservation status of the Great Crested Newt (Triturus cristatus) in Germany, also listed in Annex II of the Habitat Directive. Establishment of international cooperation and transfer of knowledge, experience and good practices between partners is an important part of the project, which will work as an incentive to continue similar projects in the future in wider region and significantly contribute to the better management of Natura 2000 sites.

The main objective of the project is the restoration or reconstruction of water habitats (130 ponds in Slovenia, 30 ponds in Germany and 3 ponds in Denmark) and terrestrial habitats (52 ha in Slovenia, 20 ha in Germany) for target amphibian species. Effective mitigation measures for amphibians on the four most problematic road sections in Radensko polje, Ljubljansko Barje and Kozjanski Park will be stablished and as examples of good practice they will be transferred to other roads in Slovenia. The success of the project will be ensured by involving all relevant stakeholders, such as public institutions in the field of nature protection, agriculture and infrastructure, local communities and land owners. Networking with other Life projects and exchanging informations on field trips is also essential for successful implementation of the project. International conferences on the amphibian conservation will be organized, where experts from all over Europe will be invited.

Coordinating beneficiary: Municipality of Grosuplje
Associated beneficiaries: Institute for Tourism and Promotion “Tourism Grosuplje” (Radensko Polje Landscape Park), Javni zavod Krajinski park Ljubljansko barje, Kozjanski park, Slovenian infrastructure agency, Centre for Cartography of Fauna and Flora, Amphi International ApS (Denmark), Nyborg Municipality (Denmark), Verein der Freunde des Deutsch-Polnischen Europe-Nationalparks Unteres Odertal eV (Germany)
Co-financers: European Commission (LIFE), The Ministry of the Environment and Spatial Planning of the Republic of Slovenia, Municipality of Bistrica ob Sotli (OBS)
Project budget: 8.079.824 €

Contribution from co-financers
European Commission: 4,840,514 €
The Ministry of the Environment and Spatial Planning of the Republic of Slovenia, Municipality of Bistrica ob Sotli: € 1,401,419