Conservation of biodiversity in mountain grazing areas of Shara
Improving the management of protected areas
Project “Conservation of biodiversity in mountain grazing areas of Shara” is funded by European Union and implemented by the United Nations Development Program in cooperation with the Ministry of Environment and Physical Planning. The Project is intended to reconcile biodiversity conservation and economic development. The goal of the Project is to restore biodiversity of Shara Mountain pastures, generate new employment and opportunities.
This project is implemented in the frame of “Improving the Management of Protected Areas” project, which goal is to help protect natural resources and to improve the quality of life of the local population.
Project is implemented by Milieukontakt Macedonia and partner Public Enterprise on Pastures and Association of Agricultural Economists of Republic of Macedonia.
Shar Planina is located on the far northwestern part of the territory of the Republic of Macedonia, and is one of the highest and according to the surface one of the largest mountains in the Balkans. The total area of Shar Planina is 840.2 km2, of which 693.9 km2 are located above 1.000 m. The areas that are located above 2,000 m above sea level are represented by 158,8 km2 (18,9% of the total area of the mountain).
The main activity of Shar Planina is livestock breeding, especially sheep breeding, as well as the utilization of wood mass. The great altitudes, the diversity of the geological base together with the dominant vegetation types are the main factors, along with the anthropogenic activities, the appearance and diversity of today’s landscapes of Shar Planina.
The pastures on the Shara Mountain are created as the primary vegetation of the area where the unfavorable conditions for growth and development of other vegetation are affected. These are higher altitude, unfavorable climatic conditions or shallow salt, etc. In the Sharplanin region, the primary natural pastures are at higher altitudes, above the forest vegetation or above 1800 m above sea level.