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      Biosphere Reserve Information



© Photo: Foto MA 49
  General Description   Lobau Biosphere Reserve is situated about 10 km south-east from Vienna within the Danube floodplain. The site belongs to the formerly sprawling central European riverine forest system and comprises residual softwood and hardwood forests, reed beds, semi-natural dry grasslands on calcareous substrates, natural eutrophic lakes, oligotrophic waters, and a system of backwaters and periodical pools. These habitats support an interesting fauna and flora, including a variety of breeding birds and orchids.
Since its designation as biosphere reserve in 1977, the site has also been declared a Ramsar Site in 1982, become part of the Donau-Auen National Park in 1996, and has been included in the Natura 2000 Network.
The area is an important ground water protection area for drinking water supply of the city of Vienna. There are no inhabitants in the biosphere reserve. However, human activities within the biosphere reserve include forestry, agriculture (e.g. extensive cereal cultures and vegetable growing) and small-scale fishing. Owing to the site’s proximity to the city of Vienna, recreational use of the area (e.g. hiking, swimming and biking on marked trails) is growing. The main human impact on the landscape is the embankment of the river.
The Lobau Museum provides environmental education for visitors, such as guided tours and educational films. In 2003/2004, the municipal forestry department will build a visitors` center (‘Nationalpark-Haus’).
A project is also underway to develop management plans for the different habitats within the floodplain region, especially the semi-natural grasslands and meadows. These plans are developed by the municipal forestry department in cooperation with the nationalpark GesmbH and the municipal department for environmental protection.
  Major ecosystem type   Temperate broadleaf forests or woodlands, including freshwater wetlands
  Major habitats & land cover types   Hardwood forest (including partly artificial forest monocultures); hard oligo-mesotrophic waters with benthic vegetation of Chara formations; floating vegetation of Ranunculus on submontainous rivers; natural eutrophic lakes with Magnopotamion or Hydrocharion-type vegetation; reed beds; humid and mesophyll grasslands; semi-natural dry grasslands on calcareous substrates
  Location   48°10'N; 16°30' to 16°35'E
  Area (hectares)    
  Total   1,037
  Core area(s)   1,037
  Buffer zone(s)  
  Transition area(s) when given  
  Altitude (metres above sea level)   +150 to +155
  Year designated   1977
  Administrative authorities   Management authority: Nationalpark Donau-Auen GmbH, and City of Vienna
  Brief description   Groundwater, climate (air pollution) and soil monitoring
Vegetation mapping
Botanical studies
Management measures
  Specific variables...    
  Abiotic   Climate, groundwater, monitoring/methodologies, pollution, pollutants, soil.
  Biodiversity   Flora, vegetation studies/plant cover.
  Socio-economic   n.a.
  Integrated monitoring   Management issues.
  Contact address   Gottfried Haubenberger
Biosphere Reserve Lobau, Vienna City Forest Department
Dr Anton-Krabichler-Platz 3
2301 Groß-Enzersdorf
  Telephone   (43) 2249 2353
  Fax   (43) 2249 2353-18

Last updated: 23/02/2007

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