Collaboration between governmental, scientific and civil society organizations is of critical importance for improving the quality and efficiency of natural resource management in the Wider Prespa Area, and for achieving the desired impact of PONT’s funding on biodiversity conservation.
In line with priorities outlined in its 2017 Funding Strategy, PONT is supporting the Regional Administration for Protected Areas in Korca (RAPA), managing Prespa National Park in Albania, and the Protection and Preservation of Natural Environment in Albania (PPNEA). PONT is also coordinating with other donors in the Wider Prespa Area, such as the Transboundary Biosphere Reserve Prespa, Phase II project, supported by the German Development Cooperation through KfW and implemented by a consortium led by GFA Consulting Group with the Institute for Nature Conservation in Albania.
In a demonstration of the effectiveness of multilateral cooperation, the Local Officer of PPNEA, supported by PONT and GFA, organized a training exercise for the monitoring of the Dalmatian pelican. Following the monitoring protocol developed by the PrespaNet Partners, PPNEA experts Joni Vorpsi and Roland Lleshi supervised the counting conducted by the RAPA Director, Mihallaq Qirjo and Olsi Duma, Head of the Monitoring Department, with assistance from Xheni Prenda, National Coordinator/Deputy Team Leader at Transboundary Biosphere Reserve Prespa Project.
The first phase of the monitoring exercise was conducted on 13 June, starting from the village of Pustec, at 13:00 and ending at 15:35 in the village of Golomboch in Albania. The following birds were counted:
- 402 mature Dalmatian pelicans;
- 30 immature Dalmatian pelicans;
- 36 great white pelicans.
The counting has been repeated on 5 July 2019 and in the following years the RAPA staff is expected to regularly participate in the transboundary monitoring scheme for the pelicans in Prespa, with increased confidence and gradually taking over the responsibility for the count in the Albanian parts of Lakes.