Brief history

Văcărești Nature Park, 1989 Photo credit: Andrei Bîrsan

The Văcărești Nature Park is a wetland, formed on the site of a hydrotechnical project commenced by the Communist regime in 1986 and left unfinished. The area is located in Bucharest, 4 km away from the city center. It spreads over a surface of 183 hectares.

The observations and studies that have been developed for biodiversity assessment purposes since 2007 highlighted the area’s natural value. The Romanian Academy, the most significant scientific institution of Romania, favorably endorsed the Substantiation Note filed in 2013 in view of having a protection regime implemented.

andrei_birsan_2000_parc_web.jpg Văcărești Nature Park, 2000 Photo credit: Andrei Bîrsan

From a natural point of view, the area is accessible especially to birds – over 150 bird species come to Văcărești, mostly water species – herons, egrets, cormorants, mallards and wild geese (ferruginous ducks). Apart from the birds, we should also mention small mammals such as muskrats, foxes and weasels. We should add interesting species of reptiles, amphibians and invertebrates. 5 otters – a species that is protected at European level – have been spotted. The presence of the otter is the best indicator of the Văcărești ecosystem’s quality.

Apart from natural species and habitats, the area also offers a magnificent landscape and a very interesting contrast between the urban, anthropized area and the natural wetland with expanses of reed, swamps and wetland-specific trees and vegetation.

In a visit to Văcărești in the summer of 2012, Tobias Salathe, RAMSAR Senior Adviser for Europe, declared: “Văcărești will undoubtedly be one of the most innovative urban wetland projects in the world”.

The Văcărești Nature Park is to be approved by a Government Decision and its establishment process is an advanced stage of completion. The Văcărești Nature Park Association is in charge of Văcărești Nature Park’s establishment process and is actively involved in engineering the area’s

future management.

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