The Danube is an ecological corridor of outstanding relevance for Europe, connecting more bio-geographic regions than any other European river, and hosting extremely rich biodiversity. The Danube islands represent unique sites in the river ecosystems, stand for intact river dynamics and sediment regime, and demonstrate the original beauty and natural rivers, valuable habitats with characteristic fauna and flora.
As a follow-up of the DANUBEparksCONNECTED project (funded by the Interreg Danube Transnational Programme), DANUBEPARKS and partners representing the waterway, hydropower and forestry sector launched the LIFE WILDisland project to protect and revitalize the last near-natural "wild" islands on the Danube. The project represents an amazing example of cross-sector trans-border cooperation, involving 15 partners from 8 countries united to restore and conserve a total of 34 islands all the way from Germany to Romania.
LIFE WILDisland targets:
- To strengthen ecological connectivity and preserve the natural wilderness in the heart of Europe, improving the coherence of the NATURA 2000 network;
- To restore natural processes, promote river dynamics and intact sediment regime;
- To demonstrate good practice for cross-sector and cross-border cooperation;
- To locate WILDislands and identify commitments with relevant policy drivers, sectors and land managers to preserve their natural heritage;
- To improve the conservation status of 1,267 ha of softwood riparian forests (EU priority habitat type 91E0*: Alluvial forests with Alnus glutinosa and Fraxinus excelsior), restoring and maintaining a total of 34 islands and 39 SCIs along the Danube;
Budget: € 14,222,637 (65 % EU co-funding)