2.9 Dalmatian and Cypriot coasts

The coast of Dalmatia is a good example of the rocky, high and jagged coastline, with few coastal plains, the formation of which was prevented by the limestone nature of the region (Fig.1_Ses.2.9), which, instead promoted the formation of many islands (almost 19% all over the country), deep coves and long stretches of gulf called wales. The particular chemical composition of the rocks, in some areas like Istria, is made up of colorful landscapes based on white, yellow or red stones, and there are also marshy areas.

FIG1_SES2.9 Limestone cliff (Slana uvala, Pag, Croatia). By J.Vítek, CC BY 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=54286151

The Cypriot coast has a more varied shape where there is an alternation of sandy and rocky beaches with a jagged shape with gulfs and bays.

Cyprus (Fig.2_Ses.2.9) is the third largest island in the Mediterranean, after Sicily and Sardinia islands. It is located in the eastern Mediterranean Sea, south of the coast of Turkey. The coastal development is equal to 648 km.

FIG2_SES2.9 Cyprus from satellite. By NASA/Chris Hadfield – Twitter, Pubblico dominio, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=25842407

The northern area is characterized by high and regular coasts that extend from the Cape of Arnáuti to the Cape of Sant’Andrea, the eastern limit of the Kárpasos peninsula. The western and southern coasts are dominated by the Tróodos Mountains. The western coast is straight and uniform, while the southern coast is jagged and has two peninsulas, that of Capo Gáta and Capo Greco.

The interior of the island is occupied by two series of mountainous, with an E-W orientation, separated by the plain of Messaria: the northern chain of Mesozoic limestone culminates at 1022 m; while the southern volcanic rock reaches its maximum height in the Tròodos Mountains (1953 m).

Between Dalmatia and Cyprus there is the limestone environment with a shortage of water courses and a consequent tendency to aridity.

2.9.1 The conservation of Cyprus habitats: natural reserves, an overview

Cyprus is an isolated island in the Mediterranean Sea that has large diversity of habitats and species that are rare and threatened. Although the diversity of life on Cyprus is large Cyprus has already lost numerous habitats so the conservation was started to avoid further losses.
Nature reserve or natural bioreserve is an area that is protected because of it's great importance for fauna and flora. It's also important for geological or some other interests that include conservation and providing for studies and research. Natural reserves can be strict natural reserves and also special natural reserves. Nature reserves fall into different categories depending on the level of protection that is set by the law. Strict nature reserves are large and unspoiled areas protected and created mainly for the purpose of research and protection of the wildlife. They are also meaningful for the conservation of biodiversity which refers to the variety and variability of different kinds of life on Earth. Since biodiversity is not evenly distributed in every part of the world it is important to protect the areas that have the most diverse kinds of life. And that is the main purpose of natural reserves. Natural environment of Cyprus is threatened by tourism development and by the lack of agricultural land.
In conclusion Cyprus has a great conservation status and numerous natural reserves. Cyprus has good climate conditions that were the main reasons for the development of Cyprus' biodiversity.


2.9.2 The conservation of Croatia's habitats: natural reserves, an overview

The conversation of Croatia's habitats: nature reserves, an overview

Nature reserves are places of great significance for zoological, botanical, geological andother areas of life. Croatia has 82 nature reserves and they are divided into strict nature reserves and special nature reserves.

Nature reserves have kept the irinitial form in spercentages that are very high for the present world which is unable to stop drastic changes. In Croatia "Bijele i Samarske Stijene" and "Hajdučki i Rožanski kukovi" are the most protected areas. They include the highest tops of Velebit. The reserves hide some rare and endemic animals. The reason for this is the capacity to keep constant living conditions through out geological history. They are also home to animals, for example birds, which buildnests far away from humans and are jeopardised because of conurbation. Croatia has 79 naturereserves,whereas strict naturereserves are intended just for scientists.They provide more likelypossibilitestoofsucceedinginthecultivationofrareor even extinctedanimalsfrom some area.In the age of climate changes, nature reserves can serve as places that can balance and reduce the negative effects which endanger biodiversity. Also, researching the ways they have survived all the natural problems can give us the knowledge how to get over the present ones.

Nature reserves give the opportunity to fix mistakes that negligent people have made. Thanks to them,nature can be home to all kinds of animals and plants.



2.9.3 Environment conservation: an example of a protected area in Cyprus.

Cape Greco National Forest Park occupies about 385 acres east of Cape Greco. The park was declared a national because of preservation of the landscape and the unique nature of the eastern part of Cyprus. In contrast to a reserve area where human activity is banned, a national park allows tourists. The walks in the park and opportunity to enjoy picnics actively attract more and more tourists. Cape Greco has about 400 different species of plants, 14 of which grow only in Cape Greco and another 14 that are considered very rare. In the past Cape Greco was covered with tall trees and plants, but nowadays the flora of the park is mostly low vegetation. The most common plants of the park are: the Phoenician Juniper, Mastic Tree, Acacia, Wild Olive, Fennel, Wild Garlic and three-coloured Chamomile. The fauna of Cape Greco nature reserve has several representatives of mammals such as hedgehogs, hares and foxes, lizards, snakes and birds, most of which are migratory. The park consists of 5 walking routes. One of the walking trails is included in part of the European walking route E4 which passes from Gibraltar to Cyprus.Another trail is part of the “Cultural Aphrodite Route” that received its name in honour of the goddess. The path, 2km in length, passes through the Cape Greco National Park, down to the beach and out to the Love Bridge and Bridge of Sinners, one of Cyprus's most famous attractions. Also, there are many walks that lead to Cape Greco National Park. The Palace caves and the Smugglers caves are deep passages into cliffs which are only accessible from the sea. Some of them are 240 feet into the rock. During calm seas and at low tide it is possible to swim and even walk in most of them. Although they have a rock-strewn environment, the waters are wonderfully clear.

2.9.4 Environment conservation: an example of a protected area in Croatia.

Croatia has a specific geographical position where Pannonian, Dinaridian, Mediterranean and Pre-Alpine influences intertwine. Because of this, Croatia has rich biological diversity so it has 420 areas that are protected by the Nature Protection Act. Those areas cover 7503〖km〗^2 which makes 8,56% of the entire territory of Croatia.
The Nature Protection Act defines 9 categories of protection: strict reserve, national park, special reserve, nature park, regional park, nature monument, significant landscape, park forest and park architecture monument. Croatia has 2 strict reserves: Bijele and Samarske stijene and Hajdučki and Rožanski kukovi, it has eight national parks: Brijuni, Krka, Kornati, Mljet, Paklenica, Plitvice Lakes, Risnjak and Sjeverni Velebit. Plitvice Lakes National Park is the oldest Croatian national park, declared in 1949, it was inscribed on the UNESCO World Natural Heritage List in 1979. It is the most famous Croatian national park due to its uniqueness and natural beauty. It is home to 1267 plant species, 50 orchid species, 321 butterfly species, 157 bird species, 20 bat species, and it also has a special place reserved for brown bears, wolfs and the lynx, which makes the park that much more special and valueable. It is well known for its waterfalls which create clear lakes in a constant biodynamic process, and as a result we have 16 larger and several smaller lakes. Croatia also currently has 78 special reserves, 11 nature parks (Biokovo, Kopački rit, Lastovo Islands, Lonjsko polje, Medvednica, Papuk, Telašćica, Učka, Velebit, Vransko jezero and Žumberak), 2 regional parks (Mura – Drava and Moslavačka gora), 85 nature monuments, of which one is under preventive protection, there are 85 significant landscapes, 28 park forests and 121 park architecture monuments.
A large number of protected natural areas show that Croatia is a country of exceptional, unique and well-preseved natural beauty that is famous throughout the world.

2.9.5 Dune landscape in Cyprus: the main characteristics.

Dune landscape in Cyprus: the main characteristics
Dune landscapes in Cyprus can be found all over the island, especially in the coastal belt. It is one of the most vulnerable ecosystems in the Mediterranean basin.
Sand dunes can be described as coastal hills formed by deposit of materials, varying in amount, type and size. There are different types of dunes. Most dunes are situated behind beaches and bays. Because of their location, they're used for tourism, urbanisation, agriculture, military etc. Cyprus also started stabilising dunes and afforestation on them. As tourism and urbanisation are growing on Cyprus, dunes are being reduced and destroyed, together with their ecosystems. There are different types of vegetation in dunes: strand lines, which have salt resistant vegetation and a very limited number of animals are able to live there; foredunes, which have grass-like vegetation and limited number of other species; yellow dunes, which also have grass-like vegetation, which can resist fast burial of sand; dune grasslands, whose vegetation mostly consists of annual plants; woodlands, which mainly contain wooden vegetation; dune slacks, which are the rarest habitation and occur in depressions between dunes.
Dunes have very limited vegetation which can survive the conditions of dune areas, so that’s the reason of their vulnerability.

2.9.6 Turtles: optimal spots for egg-laying in Cyprus.

Very little is known about why sea turtles nest on some beaches and not on others. Nesting distribution may reflect conditions that existed centuries ago, when temperature, beach profiles or the lack of predators made some areas perfect for sea turtles. The more we understand about how, where and when sea turtles nest, the better we will be able to protect their nesting habitat.
Despite coastal development and increased number of visitors, North Cyprus's beaches continue to be a favoured nesting ground for around 2000 endangered Loggerhead (Caretta caretta) and up to 400 green (Chelonia mydas) sea turtles. Female turtles, also known as hen turtles, typically lay anywhere between 70 to 150 eggs in the nesting season between late March and early June. Once the mother turtle has nested, there are various conservation efforts to protect the eggs, such as cages to prevent dogs and humans from accidentally digging them up. North Cyprus is a prime nesting ground for both the Loggerhead and Green Turtle, which is why in 1991 the Society for the Protection of Turtles (SPOT) was founded in North Cyprus. They are involved in cleaning the beach of potentially harmful rubbish, marking and protecting nesting sites, collecting data identifying individual turtles.
In conclusion, the more we understand about how, where and when sea turtles nest, the better we will be able to protect their nesting habitats.


2.9.7 What grows on the rocky coasts in Croatia?

What grows on the rocky coasts in Croatia?

The Adriatic underwater is extremely interesting along the rocky coast. The bottom of the islands and
islets is covered with stone, the open area of the northern Adriatic is covered with sand, while in the
middle and south Adriatic dominate the sediments of the sludge. Such a diverse bottom contributes
to the biodiversity of the eastern Adriatic coast. Life conditions such as depth, illumination, bottom
type, have a significant impact on the habitat because they are not the same on the coast or in the
middle of the ridge. Unfortunately, many species have disappeared, and many are endangered by oil
and waste pollution due to non-compliance with legal regulations on its use.
All the bottom, from the coastline to the deepest depths, includes the living community of the
bottom. In the Atlantic and Mediterranean Sea, lives a group of coastal craters (Littorina littorea),
whose algae are fed. Algae are resistant to drying. Crabs (Chthamalus spp.) are usually found in larger
colonies. The prey is caught with their legs, and most of them are hermaphrodite. Urchins (Echinoids)
are a class of echinoderms usually rounded. On the upper side they are covered with movable spines.
Starfish (Asteroids) are sea animals that are a part of knee echinoderms , and they have a flattened
body with arms that stand out. Seaweed (Posidonia Oceanica) is one of three species of sea flora,
and inhabits sandy - muddy sediment. Along the shore also lives the red anemone, a stinger in the
class of corals (Anthozoa). Unlike other corals, they are covered in skin.
Our Adriatic Sea is abundant with exceptional beauties, and we should try to keep it safe from
pollution and waste materials as long as possible.

2.9.8 A �flower� under the Croatian sea: Parazoanthusaxinellae(description and characteristics).

Under the Croatian sea: Parazoanthus axinellae (description and characteristics).
Parazoanthus axinellae, also known as yellow cluster anemone, is a zoanthid found in the southern part of Europe's Atlantic coast and in the Mediterranean Sea. The depth in which it can be found is between six and one hundread meters. It lives on rocky surfaces and can be found living on vertical faces.
In contrast to anemones, zoanthids have different internal anatomy and each polyp is connected by a common tissue (called the coenenchyme) and they form colonies. The animal is either orange or yellow and each polyp has twenty-four to thirty-six tentacles. The polyps are 5 millimetres in diameter and 20 millimetres in height. Sometimes a thick yellow spongy mass can be found at the base of each animal. In the Mediterranean Sea dense agglomerations can often be found in association with the soft coral Alcyonium acaule. In these biodiverse agglomerations there can be found a lot of suspension feeders such as sponges , cnidarians, bryozoans and tunicates cnidarians. The formed colonies can sometimes divide into two close but separate clonies growing together. There is a really similar species called Parazoanthus anguicomus, but that species has numerous tentacles.
Parazoanthus zoanthids have developed several feeding strategies. They capture planktonic organisms and microscopic food particles from the water column, and can absorb dissolved organic matter. There are no known visual differences between sexes. The zoanthid reproduces by budding and removing new polyps from the base of the parent.

2.9.9 Compare and contrast: Croatia and Cyprus coastal areas, find a common element and an important difference.

Differences and similarities between Croatian and Cyprus coastal areas

In this article I will try to bring out the common elements and differences of Croatia's and Cyprus' coastal areas.
Let’s begin with the countries' geographical positions. Both Croatia and Cyprus are Mediterranean countries, Cyprus is directly connected to the Mediterranean Sea, while Croatia's connection to the Mediterranean Sea is through the Adriatic Sea, which can be seen as one large bay of the Mediterranean Sea. The coastal length of Cyprus is around 782 kilometers, which is about 1000 kilometers less than Croatia’s coastline, which is about 1777 kilometers long.
The Croatian and the coast of Cyprus are similar in structure. Both are made of carbonate rocks such as karst, dolomite and limestone. That is due to the process of accumulating shells from sea creatures (those ones that have such elements in their body structure). Due to high pressure of the sea and their own weight they have formed these carbonate rocks.
The main difference is the shape of the coast. The Croatian coast is well indented, which means that it has lots of islands, 1244 to be exact, bays and coves. In contrast to Croatia's coast, Cyprus seems like one large island without any smaller islands or bays around it. We can say that Cyprus has a poorly indented coast.
In conclusion, the common elements are structure, materials and affiliation to the Mediterranean Sea. The difference is the number of islands, bays and coves. This is called coastal indentation. The Croatian coast is indented while the coast of Cyprus is not.