On 30 - 31 May, experts, scientists, and conservationists from the Danube River Network of Protected Areas (DANUBEPARKS) gathered in Văleni (Moldova), to attend the CEI Conference "DANUBEPARKS Newt Conservation Partnership & Climate Change", addressing the challenges posed by climate change and promoting biodiversity conservation.
The event featured insightful presentations from prominent European herpetologists and other experts and representatives of DANUBEPARKS' Protected Areas from 8 Danube countries. Attendees had the chance to share experiences, best practices, and innovative approaches to conserving newts and amphibians, as well as restoring wetlands.
The event paved the way for the initiation of the first Danube-wide Crested Newt conservation project which will start in 2024. The commitment of DANUBEPARKS and its partners to long-term conservation efforts, was confirmed by the signing of two strategic documents: i.e. a Memorandum of Cooperation „DANUBEPARKS Newt Conservation Partnership“ between DANUBEPARKS - Danube River Network of Protected Areas and Societas Europaea Herpetologica (European Herpetological Society); a Cooperation Agreement between DANUBEPARKS and Lower Prut Natural Reserve.
A highlight of the conference was the field trip to the nearby Lake Baleu which is part of Lower Prut Natural Reserve, where participants observed the conservation efforts and ecological significance of the region. The field trip provided a valuable opportunity to deepen the understanding of newt habitats and their ecological interactions within the broader context of the Danube River Basin.