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      Biosphere Reserve Information



  General Description   The Tuscan Islands Biosphere Reserve consists of an archipelago in the Tyrrhenian Sea composed of seven main islands and a few isolated islets. It represents an interesting system in the Mediterranean Region encompassing a wide range of geological, geomorphological and biological diversity. Islands are covered by sclerophyllous evergreen forest, Mediterranean pine woods, maquis, scrub and hardwood forest with deciduous oaks and chestnuts. The recent development of tourism has created an enormous pressure on the natural environment: consequently certain terrestrial and marine areas and some islands are protected within a National Park, particularly with a view to conserving rare and endemic species. Today (2004) more than 30,000 people live permanently in the archipelago and depend mostly on services related to tourism, with relatively little employment in agriculture and fisheries. Projects are planned to introduce renewable energy resources, to bring innovations to the agricultural sector and to enhance the availability of water by means of alternative technologies. Current research focuses on geology and geomorphology, corals and fish distribution, monitoring of sea water quality, restoration of populations of rare species, such as the Peregrine falcon (Falco peregrinus) and bats (Rhinolophus euryale). The Biosphere Reserve will enable to coordinate the work of the National Park with action to promote sustainable development and environmental protection in the entire archipelago.
  Major ecosystem type   Evergreen Mediterranean vegetation types ; coastal and marine systems
  Major habitats & land cover types   Evergreen sclerophyll forest, forest and plantations of Mediterranean pine trees, evergreen maquis and scrubs, herbaceous vegetation, forests of hardwood trees with deciduous oaks and chestnuts. Coastal halophyte vegetation
  Location   Latitude : 43°25’04’’ N and longitude: 09°55’02’’ E
42°13’42’’ N and 11°06’36’’E
  Area (hectares)    
  Total   264,800
  Core area(s)   Terrestrial zone: 1,200 Marine zone: 3,000
  Buffer zone(s)   Terrestrial zone: 16,400 Marine zone: 58,300
  Transition area(s) when given   Terrestrial zone: 10,900 Marine zone: 175,000
  Altitude (metres above sea level)   0 - 1,018 m
  Year designated   2003
  Administrative authorities   Ministerio dell’Ambiente
  Brief description   Research activities on geology and geomorphology of Islands
Measurements of greenhouse gas exchanges to validate new models that simulate the effect of the environment and climate on gas fluxes.
Soil quality assessment in relation to land use and past management practices.

Identification and taxonomy of rare plants of the archipelago
Habitat restoration for rare animals (fish, mufflon)
Study of coral and fish distribution
Study of colonisation of abandoned agricultural land by Mediterranean vegetation.
Assessment of wild goat population dynamics.

Underwater archaeology activities (shipwrecks)
Sea water monitoring to ensure sustainable fishery and aquaculture activities.
  Specific variables...    
  Abiotic   Air quality, climate, geology, geomorphology, geophysics, meteorology, monitoring/methodologies, soil, water quality/chemistry.
  Biodiversity   Biology, coastal/marine, coral reefs, ecosystem assessment, fishes, island systems/islands, lagoon systems, mediterranean type/scherophyll, plants, population genetics/population dynamics, rare/endangered/threatened species, restoration/rehabilitation/redevelopment, species inventorying/inventory, taxonomy, vegetation studies/plant cover.
  Socio-economic   Archaeology/Paleontology, cultural aspects, demography.
  Integrated monitoring   Environmental change, land use/land cover, modelling, monitoring/methodologies.
  Contact address    
Ente Parco Nazionale Arcipelago Toscano
Via Guerrazzi, 1
  Telephone   (39.565) 919411
  Fax   (39.565) 919428

Last updated: 04/08/2004

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