In situ conservation actions for Limonium mucronulatum at Larnaca salt lake, Cyprus

29 January 2018

Thumb limonium 1

Limonium mucronulatum is an erect perennial, glaucous herb, flowering from June to August and fruiting from July to September. It is endemic to Cyprus and occurs on the margins of Larnaca salt lake, in openings of halophytic scrub, near the sea level. The total population is approximately 700 individuals. The species is included in the Red Data Book of the Flora of Cyprus as Critically Endangered. The main threat is the uncontrolled (vehicle) traffic through its habitat.

Within the framework of the CARE-MEDIFLORA project, soft fencing was established around the species habitat, in order to control access of motorized vehicles. The population of the species was reinforced by planting 152 individuals on elevated beds. The plants were produced using seeds collected from the area and were planted in December 2017. Also, in December 2017 the species was reintroduced to a second, neighbouring location where the population was destroyed in 2011. Actions aiming to control competing vegetation (Phragmites australis) and invasive species (Acacia saligna) were also enforced.

Population reinforcement of Limonium mucronulatum at Larnaca salt lake.

Watering every individual after planting.

Control of competing vegetation (Phragmites australis) with herbicides.

Soft fencing around the species habitat.

Restoration actions at the second location where the population was destroyed due to public works

Public works (left picture) and removing the rubbles (centre and right pictures).

Soft fencing (left picture) and establishing of the species (right picture).


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MAVA Foundation

Mediterranean Plant Specialist Group (IUCN/SSC) Sóller Botanical Garden Foundation, Balearic Islands Office of the Environment of Corsica - National Botanical Academy of Corsica Hortus Botanicus Karalitanus, Sardinia University of Catania, Sicily Mediterranean Agronomic Institute of Chania, Crete Agricultural Research Institute, Cyprus Department of Forests, Cyprus