was established with the active support of the School of Agriculture of
the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki with which it continues to
cooperate closely on subjects of water science, soil science, agronomy,
agricultural economics, agricultural ecology, wetland restoration and
management, rural sociology, etc. It has promoted in Greece the need to
view agricultural and wetland ecosystems as an integrated resource for
in the relationships among water, agriculture and wetlands is evidenced by
the pertinent studies it has so far conducted alone and in collaboration
with other scientists as well as by its current efforts to develop new
ventures related to these relationships, notably projects and other
actions aiming at the implementation of the Water Framework Directive
establishment of EKBY in 1991 was one of the benefits produced by a
project entitled "Conservation and Management of Greek Wetlands:
Strategy and Action Plan". The project was carried out in 1988-1990,
coordinated by the Laboratory of Ecology and Environmental Protection of
the School of Agriculture, Aristotle University, WWF- International and
IUCN and funded by WWF-International. The project was completed with a
workshop in which several working documents had been prepared. Among these
were one article on the interactions between agricultural and wetland
ecosystems and three articles on the agricultural conditions around three
major wetlands. The Action Plan included a proposal on the establishment
of a scientific body (i.e. EKBY) to work specifically on wetlands. The
proposal was approved by the Greek Government and the European Commission.
One of the implicit
messages of the above mentioned workshop was: "Agricultural
ecosystems (especially the irrigated ones) in Greece as well in the
Mediterranean region exert not only negative but also positive influences
on wetland ecosystems and every effort should be made to minimize the
former and maximize the latter influences. In spite of the fact that the
very existence of agriculture in the Mediterranean region depends on
healthy freshwater wetlands the paramount threat to those wetlands
originates from unsustainable agriculture. Wetlands need to have
sustainable agroecosystems in their perimetric zone". This message
was seriously taken into consideration by EKBY in all its work programmes.
One sees this message expressed in a more elaborate way in Resolution
VIII.34 (Agriculture, wetlands and water resource management) of the COP8.
The School of Agriculture of the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki recognizing the importance of wetlands for agriculture has provided and continues to provide multiple and very strong moral and material support to EKBY. Example: It provided free premises in the Agricultural Farm for the first seven years and then a plot in the same farm for the construction of EKBY's own building. Many professors of Agriculture provided scientific advice to EKBY on subjects of hydrology, agricultural economics, management of resources etc. Other professors, motivated by EKBY organized a mission to Prespa National Park to help farmers in adopting practices less harmful to the neighboring wetlands. A professor of Agricultural Ecology (P.A. Gerakis) was the first director of EKBY. Several professors participated in EKBY's projects.
An idea about EKBY's previous actions on the subject may be obtained by the studies, reports and articles produced by EKBY and its collaborators (see references). Also, EKBY's newsletter AMPHIBION has published numerous pertinent articles. Table 1 shows examples of characteristic previous projects.
Examples of previous projects
Motivated by the late
G.E. Hollis, by the late S. Chatzigiannakis and by Dr. Luc Hoffmann, EKBY
was involved since the very beginning of its operation in wetland
restoration. In Greece the main force causing wetland drainage in
1924-1964 was agriculture. Since 1990 the main force pressing for wetland
restoration is agriculture. EKBY is taking the latter force into
consideration in planning restoration projects. Naturally, a sound
restoration plan must aim not only at the reinstatement of the irrigation
value but also at the creation of as many as possible of the other
important wetland values for the rural population and for society in
EKBY has assisted the
Greek Ministry of Agriculture in preparing a programme on the
implementation of the EU agroenvironmental regulations in the
agroecosystems of the watersheds of Lake Koronia and other wetlands.
The library and the
electronic archives of EKBY are frequently used by the undergraduate and
postgraduate students of Agriculture and Civil Engineering.
EKBY's staff have
been invited to give lectures in various training seminars aiming at the
sustainable use of water resources and at organic farming.
In 2000 the Ministry
of Agriculture had assigned to the Goulandris Natural History Museum -
EKBY the coordination of a project entitled "Agriculture and
Environment". The outcome of that project was the preparation and
publication of national
strategies on the following issues: water resources, soil resources,
genetic resources and human resources of the rural areas.
The School of Agriculture, with the assistance of EKBY, has started an undergraduate course entitled "Wetlands and Agriculture" in 1996.
A list of pertinent project proposals, which have been submitted or have been prepared by EKBY or its collaborators, is shown in Table 3.
Table 3. Pending proposals submitted by EKBY
EKBY is in
cooperation with staff members from the School of Agriculture is in
contact with the Ministry of Agriculture in order to support the latter in
its new programme on sustainable agriculture.
Studies, Reports, Articles prepared by
EKBY and its Collaborators.
D.H.A, I.M. Shepherd, A. Langhoff, R. Calaon, V. Hoffmann, J.R. Thompson,
C.T. Agnew, H. Gavin, D. Gasca-Tucker, G. Zalidis, G. Bilas, S.
Chatzigiannakis, A. Refsgaard, H. Refstrup Sorensen. 1999. New integrated
technologies for wetland management and protection. Abstract of a paper
presented at the 3rd Danish
Hydrological Institute (DHI) Software Conference. Helsingor, Denmark,
7-11 June 1999.
Al-Khudhairy D.H.A, C. Leemhuis, V.
Hoffmann, I.M. Shepherd, J.R. Thompson, H. Gavin, D. Gasca Tucker, G.
Zalidis, G. Bilas, A. Refsgaard, H. Refstrup Sorenson, D. Papadimos, and
A. Argentieri. 2000.
Modern software tools for wetland management, conservation and
restoration. Proceedings of the Second SHYLOC Workshop. Volos, Greece, 6th
October. 2000. 193 p.
D.H.A, C. Leemhuis, V. Hoffmann, I.M. Shepherd, R. Calaon, J.R. Thompson,
H. Gavin, D. Gasca Tucker, G. Zalidis, G. Bilas, and D. Papadimos. 2002.
Monitoring wetland ditch water levels using landsat TM and ground-based
measurements. Photogrammetric Engineering & Remote Sensing 68(8):
D.H.A., C. Leemhuis, V. Hoffmann, R. Calaon, I.M. Shepherd, J.R. Thompson,
H. Gavin, D. Gasca Tucker, H. Refstrup Sorenson, A. Refsgaard, G. Bilas,
G. Zalidis, and D. Papadimos. 2000. Innovative technologies for scientific
wetland management, conservation and restoration. International
Association of Hydrological Sciences (IAHS). Publication Number 267.
Maria and C. Perennou. 1994. Catalogue of training courses relevant to
wetland and water management in Greece. A MedWet publication. Greek Biotope/Wetland Centre (EKBY) and Station
Biologique de la Tour du Valat. 63 p.
Maria and K. Skordas. 1995. MedWet training sub-project: Application on
test site Kerkini, Greece, description of action and applicability of
MedWet method for training. A MedWet publication. Greek Biotope/Wetland
Centre (EKBY). Thermi. 14 p. (En, Gr su)
E.T., V. Takavakoglou, and D. Papadimos. 2002. Identification of potential
wetland restoration projects. p. 93-101. In: G.C. Zalidis, T.L. Crisman,
and P.A. Gerakis (editors). Restoration of Mediterranean wetlands.
Hellenic Ministry of the Environment, Physical Planning and Public Works,
Athens and Greek Biotope/Wetland Centre, Thermi, Greece. (Gr, En)
E.T., G. Bilas, G. Galanis, V. Takavakoglou, and Sotiria Karsavouni. 2002.
Wetland restoration in response to public needs and expectations: Lake
Mavrouda. p. 193-200. In: G.C. Zalidis, T.L. Crisman, and P.A. Gerakis
(editors). Restoration of Mediterranean wetlands. Hellenic Ministry of the
Environment, Physical Planning and Public Works, Athens and Greek
Biotope/Wetland Centre, Thermi, Greece. (Gr, En)
A.K., X.P. Dimitriadis, G.C. Zalidis, N. Silleos, and S.L.
Chatzigiannakis. 1995. The use of GIS for water balance study in the
Karla's wetland watershed.. p. 413-422. In: Proceedings 2nd
International Exhibition and Conference for Environmental Technology.
HELECO '95. Athens. 9-12 November 1995.
(Gr, En su)
A.K., G.C. Zalidis, and X.P. Dimitriadis. 1995. Construction of a spatial
data base for hydrologic data for Thessaly's hydrological basins and the
use of GIS for hydrologic data processing. Greek Biotope/Wetland Centre
(EKBY). Thermi. 15 p. (Gr, En su)
A., G. Zalidis, D. Papadimos, N. Syllaios, and A. Gerakis. 1998. A spatial
distribution method to rehabilitate the recharge-discharge function of
Anthemountas watershed. p. 1011-1012 In: Proceedings of 4th
International Conference on Protection and Restoration of the Environment.
Center for Environmental Engineering at Stevens Institute of Technology,
USA and the Division of Hydraulics and Environmental Engineering of
Aristotle University of Thessaloniki. Halkidiki, Greece, July, 1998.
G. 1993. Improving the operation, as an irrigation reservoir, of Lake
Kerkini in order to serve other functions. Greek Biotope/Wetland Centre
(EKBY). Thermi. 72 p. (Gr)
Dimitriadis, X.P. 1995a. A
method for improving the irrigation efficiency in the Axios irrigation
network and its importance for the natural wetland areas of the Delta.
Greek Biotope/Wetland Centre (EKBY). Thermi. 206 p. (Gr, En su)
Dimitriadis, X.P. 1995b. Nature
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the European Union (Proceedings of a seminar held in Denmark, 29-31 May
1995). Ministry of Environment and Energy, The National Forest and Nature
X.P., G.C. Zalidis, and V.Z. Antonopoulos. 1996. Water management of the
Axios irrigation networks p.894-909. In: Proceedings of the 2nd National Conference on Land Reclamation Projects-Water
Resources Management-Agriculture Mechanisation. Larisa, 24-27 April 1996.
Georghiou, K. (Project Leader). 1996. Specific management
plan for the Site Koilada kai Ekvoles Spercheiou-Maliakos Kolpos
(GR2440002). Greek Biotope/Wetland Centre (EKBY). Thermi. 275 p. (Gr,
T. (Project Leader). 1996. Specific management plan for the Site Ekvoles
Acheronta kai Stena Acheronta (GR2140001). Greek Biotope/Wetland Centre
(EKBY). Thermi. 228 p. (Gr, En su)
A. 1993. Population characteristics and production systems of water
buffaloes in Greek wetlands. Greek Biotope/Wetland Centre (EKBY) and
Section of Animal Production, Faculty of Agriculture, Aristotle University
of Thessaloniki. 64 p. (Gr, En su)
A., C. Ligda, and J. Boyazoglu. 1994. Population characteristics of water
buffaloes in Greek wetlands. Animal Resources Information Bulletin of
UNEP-FAO 14: 83-95.
A. and Kiriaki Kalburtji. 1998. Agricultural activities affecting the
functions and values of Ramsar wetland sites of Greece. Agriculture,
Ecosystems and Environment 70:119-128
A., Kiriaki Kalburtji, and S. Tsiouris. 1998. The role of organic farming
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agriculture for food, energy and industry: Strategies towards achievement.
Proceedings of the International Conference held in Braunschweig, Germany,
June 1997. James and James (Science Publishers) Ltd, London.
Trisevgeni. 1995. Water quality monitoring of Lake Ismaris. Polytechnic
School of Democritus University of Thrace. Xanthi. 28 p. (Gr, En su)
Helena, K.L. Kalburtji, and A.P. Mamolos. 2001b. Fuzzy set analysis and
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L., N. Beopoulos, G. Vlahos, and N. Gounaris. 1995. Biotope/wetland
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Mavroudis I., A. Panoras, and G.C.
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Ourania Giannakou. 2001. Inventory of projects and studies and formulation
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X.P. Dimitriadis, and S. Chatzigiannakis. 1995. Soil survey of the soils
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D, G.C. Zalidis, and E.T. Anastasiadis. 2002. Restoration of wetland
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the water of lake Kerkini. Proceedings of a training course, Serres, 25-29
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