Serbia: 15/02/14 Update – Zvezadra Forest Park Has Now Been Saved Thanks To Biologist Dr. Miroslav Demajo and All His Supporters – Great News !

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belgrade forest

15/02/14 – We have some great news to share with you today. 

Way back in 2009 we wrote a post in relation to a campaign to save Zvezadra forest park which is located close to the centre of Belgrade.

Biologist Dr. Miroslav Demajo headed the campaign, attempting to save a forest area of over 80 hectares which contained a huge amount of different birdlife and was home to no less than 5 different species of owl alone.

Dr. Miroslav set up a website completely dedicated to this campaign; the site which can be viewed at:  http://zvezdarskasuma.blogspot.com

Click on the following link to see our post to save the forest from 2009:

https://serbiananimalsvoice.com/2009/09/11/serbia-campaign-for-the-protection-of-zvezdara-forest-in-belgrade/ 

Today, 15/02/14 we have been sent a great news mail by Dr. Miroslav, informing us that now the forest has been recently proclaimed a Nature Monument, grade of protection III but protecting plants and animals according to Bern Conventino, and other local and International laws

The message sent today by Miroslav is as follows:

Dear Mark,

I hope You remember me as I have been helping Vesna Mechanin concerning protected areas in Serbia, namely, Stara Planina and others. Just to remind You, for 5 years our Association for the Protection of the Zvezdara Forest in Belgrade has fought a battle to save this wood park in Belgrade. You have once put this also on Your WEB site.

I am happy to write that the forest of some over 80 hectares has been recently proclaimed a Nature Monument, grade of protection III but protecting plants and animals according to Bern Conventino, and other local and International laws. It was a long tedious battle but we have succeeded, a handful of enthusiasts. 

Thanks for Your help and may the battles for Nature continue.

With best wishes,

Dr. Miroslav Demajo, biologist

Belgrade

We want to now send our congratulation to Dr. Miroslav and all the dedicated campaigners who have campaigner long and hard for over 5 years to obtain protection for the forest and for all the wildlife species living there

The forest will now remain a protected area which will allow the citizens of Belgrade to visit and enjoy; knowing that their haven of green is no longer under threat.

Congratulation to Dr. Miroslav; we are all very happy for your excellent campaign and for your great news in protecting the environment and wildlife.

https://serbiananimalsvoice.files.wordpress.com/2009/09/big_refractor_dome.jpg

The name of the forest park Zvezdara comes from word “star” because of the Astronomical Observatory located there, close to the centre of Belgrade – see above photograph.

The Observatory built in the 1930s. After the II World War, volunteers planted the forest. For years, illegal building was taking place and in 2009 the City officials wanted to take 2 hectares for the adjacent hospital, some more land for a church and also for other construction.

A group of citizens established a group concerning the saving of this park. During the first few  weeks about 3000 signatures were collected from concerned citizens for the petition.

The fact was that the hospital itself had enough space for additional construction within its enclosure and even doctors with whom campaigners were in contact with said that it was not necessary to expand the hospital outside its existing site. The Church had a temple already close by.

Campaigners contacted officials and sent protest letters to many Institutions.

All this was actually based around the existing corruption that related to construction sites etc. as the forest land was very tempting and cheap. The forest is very healthy, rich in birds. About 5 species of owls live there. The forest also helps keep erosion away and is vital in its importance in keeping good air quality and milder climate in summer for the city.

Belgrade does not have many places like this and the forest is a unique space for recreation.

 

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