News January 2024

Coastal management review: report 2020-2022

Since 2007, INBO has been monitoring coastal natural areas on behalf of the Agency for Nature & Forests. The main focus is on flora, but fauna and abiotics are also covered. In November, the final report for the 2020-2022 period was published.

Some observations:

  • Nature restoration is particularly succesful in dune slacks, with for example a strong expansion of orchid populations.
  • Restoration of dune grasslands proves more difficult due to drought stress. An additional bottleneck here is the limited dispersal capacity of the characteristic plant species.
  • Especially in the smaller areas, grazing is insufficient to maintain the grassland flora. There, additional, more large-scale nature restoration works and subsequent targeted mowing and grazing management are needed.

In the report, we pay much attention to the mudflats and salt marshes. Both the geomorphodynamics and the development of vegetation and flora are discussed. Nature restoration substantially increased the area of 'tidal nature' and many characteristic plant species proliferated. Sea couch encroachment is a permanent management concern.

We also broadly address the issue of invasive species such as Rosa rugusa. Evaluation of large-scale control of this species on the east coast, shows that regrowth occurs in about a third of the managed plots.Thus, aftercare is crucial for successful management. It is important to take the experience gained into account in future control operations.

Sam Provoost

Read the report (in Dutch): Provoost S, Paredis R, Jansen J, Van Hecke B, Vercruysse W, Bosteels Y, Vandendriessche J & Van Lierop F (2023). Beheerevaluatie Kust 2: eindrapport periode 2020-2022. Rapporten van het Instituut voor Natuur- en Bosonderzoek 2023 (49). Instituut voor Natuur- en Bosonderzoek

Image above: INBO


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