Dunaipoly.hu - Vakok és gyengénlátók számára

Rétszilasi Lakes Nature Reserve

<p class="Norml1" style="text-align: justify;"><span lang="FR">The nature reserve is located in Fejér county, in the southern part of the Sárrét and on the northern edge of the southern part of the Rétszilasi depression. Its main boundaries are formed by the two canals of the area, the Malom and Nádor canals. The two watercourses also provide the combined water supply for more than 600 hectares of wetlands.</span></p>

Number of the decision to declare them protected: Decree 25/1996 (X. 9.) KTM.

            Registration number: /TT/96

            Extent of protected area: 1495 ha, the entire area is included in the Ramsar List

            Municipal boundaries concerned: Pusztaegres, Sáregres, Sárbogárd

Brief description of the protected natural values

The Rétszilasi Lakes is the southernmost and one of the most important parts of the ecological green corridor of the Sárvíz Valley. It is of particular importance for the nesting of waterbirds, but perhaps even more important during the migration of waterfowl.The field was originally covered by about two-thirds forest steppe and closed forest. It is likely that the process of natural afforestation, which started after the steppe phase, was already influenced by anthropogenic factors. By the time of Joseph II, there was hardly any more forest in the Great Plain than there is today.

The flora of the area belongs to the Flora of the Plain (Eupannonian) and the Flora of the Field (Colocene). The area is well supplied with water, which means that plant communities that prefer wetland habitats can still survive. The larger areas of Sicilian salt meadows and white-tipped meadows are of conservation value.

In addition to these plant communities, several protected plants have been found. Of these, the valuable orchid population deserves special mention. The 4 species of ram found so far, with populations of 10-1000 individuals of varying size, and the highly protected population of spider crabs are of great natural value.

Both terrestrial and aquatic fauna of the nature reserve is similar to the rest of the Great Plain. This is partly due to climatic factors and partly due to the high cultural impact. Here, too, species living in open plant communities tend to survive on cultivated steppes.

The fauna around fish ponds is one of the least studied areas. Only the bird life of the area has been recorded for a long time and every year the ornithological results are enriched by scientific surveys.

The fact that the area is poorly explored zoologically is mainly due to the invertebrates, although the insects found so far include many species of great conservation value.

Fish are mainly limited to farmed fish species, as far as the species found in the area are concerned. However, the presence of the protected meadow pipit in the watercourses and outfalls has been documented.

Mammals include the highly protected otter, which is found in good numbers in the area. The population of this species, which already leaves clear traces behind it, can be very well estimated during the winter months.

Birds are the greatest asset of the Rétszilasi Lakes. Ornithological research has been carried out in the area for a long time. Members of the Hungarian Ornithological and Nature Conservation Society and local experts have been carrying out faunistic and ringing activities here for many years. Thanks to the large number of regular observations, it has been possible to map and determine the number of species occurring here, their population size, frequency of occurrence and breeding results.

The data collected over many years have shown that the bird fauna of the area is extremely rich. To date, 200 species have been described, which represents about 75 % of the total number of species known to occur in Hungary and as such is of considerable ornithological value.

Looking through the list of species, 181 of these 200 species are protected and 32 species are classified as specially protected. It is particularly pleasing that the majority of the protected species - 94 species - nest in the area.

During the autumn migration season, thousands of geese and over 10,000 ducks rest on the lakes. To protect them, hunting of waterfowl is prohibited throughout the area. For these reasons, the area has been granted Ramsar status.

Main threats

Fortunately, the status of the nature reserve in terms of internal threats is good. The owners of the site are making every effort to fully comply with the nature conservation rules and to do their utmost to respect them. The fact that almost half of the area is under the management of the nature conservation authority is also a decisive factor.

As far as fishing is concerned, it is essential to continue to operate the ponds and to support their management, as their existence is of great importance from a conservation point of view. However, fishing activities can also cause a lot of damage to the environment. During the autumn fishing season, bird populations are unintentionally subject to considerable disturbance. This cannot be avoided, but it can be mitigated. When organising the work, it is advisable to arrange the day's tasks so that they can be completed as quickly as possible, so that birds wishing to spend the night can take up their evening roosts without disturbance. However, it is not only the evening retrievals but also the morning fledging that need to be kept quiet.

After autumn harvests, a water level of at least 20 cm should be left in some parts of the ponds for overwintering or long-term resident species. When filling the ponds, the quality and quantity of water available is a particular concern each year. Unfortunately, late filling has been known to destroy a significant number of nests and kill many chicks. Every effort should be made to ensure that the filling of ponds is completed before the start of the nesting season and that water levels do not change during the nesting season. Special attention should be paid to ponds where heronries are located.

The main problems in cane management are excessive or prolonged harvesting and burning. Over-exploitation of reeds leads to the disappearance of patches of old reeds, which are important for nesting, for example, for herons. Prolonged harvesting and burning also discourage nesting, and the latter is a major source of environmental pollution and as such must be eliminated from the area. In order to ensure the nesting of heron species, reeds in the vicinity of the nesting sites must be harvested in 3-year rotations and all reed-cutting work must be completed by 28 February at the latest.

Agricultural land must continue to be used in accordance with the type of farming. Poor quality ploughland should be converted back to grass, either by grassing or by natural re-sodding as soon as possible. The valuable grasslands in the area have been shaped by decades of traditional cattle rearing and regular mowing, and are now what they are today. If this original state is to be maintained, the necessary influencing factors must be taken care of.

The greatest threat to forest management is the further reduction in the already small number of trees suitable for nesting. In a nature reserve with few trees, the main step should be to set the age at which forests are ripe for felling as close as possible to their natural age.