Restoration of Baltic sandy beaches
Opening overgrown beaches in Archipelago National Park. Photo: Jani Virtanen.
The unique, versatile natural environment and species on the sand beaches of the Baltic Sea are threatened in many locations by eutrophication and overgrowth caused by nitrogen loads. This results in bare sand being overgrown by the common reed or other tall vegetation, or almost impenetrably thick junipers or other bushes. Natural, predominantly threatened species that live on sand beaches along the shoreline and in the archipelago are suffering from spread of Rosa rugosa, a harmful invasive alien species.
The project will lead to the improvement of conditions on the sand beaches of the Baltic Sea in five Natura 2000 sites in 2016–2020. Algae masses will be removed from the beaches, while the common reed will be mechanically cut over several consecutive years. Bushes will be removed and Rosa rugosa will be systematically eradicated. In addition, the Tulliniemi bird conservation area in Hankoniemi will be equipped with a duckboard trail to reduce the harmful impacts of substantial recreational use on the flora in the area.
Cutting the common reed helps to fight overgrowth at the sandy beaches of Storsanden on the west coast of Finland.
Photos before and after: Lena Wargén 2018, Parks & Wildlife Finland.