News Local Paralimni lake choked in garbage, habitat at risk (photos)

Paralimni lake choked in garbage, habitat at risk (photos)

Paralimni lake, the most important natural habitat on the island after the Akrotiri and Larnaca salt lakes, is at risk due to unmonitored access by the public, poaching, farming, illegal discarding of building materials and garbage, removal of water, and continuous urban expansion, according to today’s issue of Phileleftheros.

The lake is home to endangered species of flora and fauna, like the Cyprus grass snake (Natrix natrix cypriaca), a subspecies of the grass snake which is endemic to Cyprus.

After the recent heavy rainfall, the embankment that closes the irrigation canal has been removed, resulting in huge amounts of water leaving the lake.

The Paralimni lake is part of the Natura 2000 network; among the protected species in the area are the wild birds Vanellus spinosus (spur-winged lapwing), Himantopus himantopus (black-winged stilt), and Charadrius alexandrinus (Kentish plover).

Ιn March 2009, the Paralimni Lake was declared a SPA (Special Protection Area), while in January 2011 it was declared SCI (area of Special Community Importance). In April 2015, the SCI region was declared a SAC (Special Area of Conservation) and a Decree was issued for the protection and management of wildlife.

Klitos Papastylianou, representative of the citizens’ initiative Cyprus Natural Coastline which is fighting for the protection of the natural coastline in Cyprus, said “The Paralimni Lake is a perfect example of inadequate management of a Natura 2000 area. Cars enter the premises and discard garbage, and construction works taking place nearby have never been subjected to environmental impact due diligence. They have not even obtained planning and construction permits, like for example the shooting range, or the motorcycle racing track.”

The Environment Department said that they are monitoring the water levels after the recent rains and take action accordingly to prevent flooding, like the removal of the barrier in the north end of the lake.

In relation to the garbage disposal, the Department said that the area is cleaned two to three times a year in collaboration with local authorities and they also try to educate the general public to prevent such incidents in the future.

Read more:

Top Stories

164 new cases, one death announced on Thursday

The Health Ministry announced the death of one person due to COVID-19. This raises the death toll from the virus in Cyprus to 178,...

Where to get antigen rapid tests on Friday

The Health Ministry announced the following antigen rapid test sites for Friday, 22 January 2021: LIMASSOL Parking place Sklavenitis supermarket, Germasogia 08:30-16:30 Parking place Lidl supermarket, Limassol...

Alcohol consumption among Cypriot students high

Alcohol consumption among students has been reduced, the Cyprus National Addictions Authority ascertained on the basis of a European research, conducted every four years....

Earthquake measuring 5 felt all over Cyprus

An earthquake measuring 5 on the Richter scale occurred around 16:30 and was felt all over Cyprus. Due to the earthquake, the Parliament session that...

UK hits 5m vaccine doses as health minister defends scheduling change

British health minister Matt Hancock on Thursday (January 21) lamented another record daily number of COVID-19 deaths, but hailed the achievements of the UK's...


Squash soup

Ingredients: 1 kg pumpkin, cut into small cubes, approximately 5 cups 2 medium (400g) sweet potatoes, cut into cubes, approximately 2 ½ cups 1 chopped leek, only...


No visit to Cyprus is complete without enjoying the traditional meal of many small dishes known as ‘meze’. This large feast, which has been a...

Prawns with fried cheese, barley shaped pasta

Put the barley shaped pasta into a small pan with salted water, bring to a boil and when tender, drain. Peal the prawns leaving...

Salmon and shrimp sheftalies

Mix all ingredients for tabbouli in a bowl and keep to one side so flavours can combine. Prepare the sheftalies: wash and soak the casing...