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Datenbank der Projekte zur ländlichen Entwicklung

Restoration of a Poplar Grove to Natural Riverbank Habitats-Labastida, Álava


This project aims to restore the natural poplar forest habitat along the banks of the Ebro River in Salinillas de Buradón to encourage biodiversity. This is being done through the combined efforts of the landowners and local government authorities.



The expansion of poplar forests along riverbanks is a phenomenon that generally has negative repercussions on biodiversity as it creates homogeneous and structurally simple habitats, which require intense forestry management. The poplar grove along the banks of the Ebro river in Salinillas de Buradón is an extraordinary habitat for the following species: weasel, nutria and European mink and so became recognised to be at risk from this negative phenomenon


The main aim of this project is to promote the conservation of biodiversity through restoring the riverbank forest area, specifically by encouraging its gradual reversion back to natural poplar forest habitats. More specific objectives include: - The protection of local shrubs and arboreal vegetation - Woodland maintenance: ringing and cutting trees for the creation of snags across the entire area; and the upkeep of trees with large trunks

Main activities

Activities undertaken in this project are primarily focusing on forest management including the annual pruning of small copses and the manual plantations of riverbank tree species. Throughout these activities respect will be given to environmental protection and the project will refrain from engaging in inappropriate commercial forest exploitation or forestation with rapid-growth species. The critical mating period of nutria and European mink will also be considered throughout the project.

Results & Benefits

The combined action of the government and forest owners is expected to resolve the numerous problems threatening the area, such as keeping habitats in a good state of conservation, deterioration of riverbank forests, falling river flows, physical occupation of riverbanks, and the dwindling diversity of riverbed environments. The project also hopes to aid the reversion back to natural riverbed habitats, home to species such as the nutria and the European mink.

Lessons learnt

The development of this project has already shown that the combined efforts of forest owners and various local governments are essential to tackle complex issues of this nature. It is also vital to take into account the landowners’ loss of profits due to these types of activities, particularly felling restrictions, in order to provide them with adequate compensation and to involve them in the ecosystem restoration activities.

Project location and other information

Labástida (Álava)


Pais Vasco

RDP Territory

País Vasco

Total project cost (€)

37 000

EAFRD contribution (€)

18 500

National contribution (€)

18 500

Contact name

Autoridad de gestión del Pais Vasco


+34 945 01 96 46

Languages for contact


Document attachment

At a glance



Final beneficiary type

Forester, Public/local authorities

Budget range

€20 000 - €99 999

Start date:


End Date:


Theme / Measure:

• Environment and Sustainable Resource Management
• Sustainable use of forestry land
• 225. Forest-environment payments


Forest management, Habitat restoration, River basin management, Species conservation, Nature conservation

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