Latvian Fund for Nature
Nature Conservation Agency
Latvian Environmental Protection Fund
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Vīlandes iela 3-7, Rīga, LV-1010
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Increase the knowledge and skills of the personnel and the related institutions involved in environment protection on the issues of determining specially protected habitats of the European Union by developing an illustrative reference list and educational material on plant species in Latvia characterizing these habitats. Develop material suitable for experts in other fields, mapping experts and other interested groups as a guide to help identify and determine these habitats and ensure higher quality habitat mapping. At the same time, the material will serve as an educational tool and provide the utmost information on these species. The material would also be useful for landowners who wish to learn more about the values on their property and get instruction about how to identify them.
- Create a reference list and educational material or a field guide of plants (further in the text “Field guide”) helping to identify specially protected habitats of the European Union (further in the text – EU habitats) by monitoring the plants – visually the most perceivable species in nature.
- Provide the most information possible on these species in a concentrated and visible form with precise and detailed photos of plants and with an emphasis on indicators for species identification in the field.
- Develop this reference material with the authors’ original photos so that it can be officially published and used.
1. Copyrights of original photos of plant species will be acquired for the publishing purposes of the Field guide. High quality photos with clearly visibly species attributes will be chosen.
2. Information and photos on the most common EU habitat groups (forests and heaths, grasslands and bogs – in total 32 habitats) in Latvia and their characterizing species – mainly, vascular plant species, will be included in the Field guide.
3. Extensive illustrative information will be provided on these species (significant identification attributes in the field, if the plant is in a vegetative state, or a specially protected species in Latvia, or a Habitats Directive Annex II, IV, V species, or umbrella species under the interpretation of the Habitats Directive, or indicator species of biologically valuable grasslands, or natural forest specific or indicator species, or peculiarities of species range in Latvia, or species ecological peculiarities, and similar info).
4. Generic names will be given both in the Latin and in the Latvian.
5. Special work is planned on identification of the species by their vegetative attributes, as often species have to be identified when they are not blooming.
6. A Field guide for two species that are hard to differentiate (but relevant for the habitat) – sedge genus and fern species – will be developed.
The layout of the Field guide has been prepared on plant species characterizing thirty-two EU habitats. The material is divided into 5 groups:
- EU forest and heath habitat species,
- EU grassland habitat species,
- EU mire habitat species,
- Sedge genus (Carex) species that are hard to differentiate, but which are relevant for the identification of EU habitats,
- Species of ferns that are hard to differentiate, but which are relevant for the identification of EU habitats.
Within the scope of this project, it is planned to develop an electronic version of the Field guide with the option to print a full volume or only a separate habitat or species group (this is an advantage in comparison with a printed book). However, the layout of this electronic version will be prepared so it is suitable for printing if such financial opportunity or need shall arise.