Database release:
SDF
NATURA 2000 - STANDARD DATA FORM

For Special Protection Areas (SPA),
Proposed Sites for Community Importance (pSCI),
Sites of Community Importance (SCI) and
for Special Areas of Conservation (SAC)

TABLE OF CONTENTS

1. SITE IDENTIFICATION

Back to top

1.1 Type

B

1.2 Site code

GR4340002

1.3 Site name

NISOS ELAFONISOS KAI PARAKTIA THALASSIA ZONI

1.4 First Compilation date

1995-03

1.5 Update date

2016-12

1.6 Respondent:

Name/Organisation:Υπουργείο Περιβάλλοντος και Ενέργειας
Address:               
Email:
Date site proposed as SCI:1996-08
Date site confirmed as SCI:2006-09
Date site designated as SAC:2011-03
National legal reference of SAC designation:Law 3937/29-3-11 (OJ 60 A)

2. SITE LOCATION

Back to top

2.1 Site-centre location [decimal degrees]:

Longitude:23.530556
Latitude:35.270000

2.2 Area [ha]

270.6700

2.3 Marine area [%]

83.7300

2.4 Sitelength [km]:

0.00

2.5 Administrative region code and name

NUTS level 2 code Region Name
GR43Kriti

2.6 Biogeographical Region(s)

Mediterranean (0.00 %)

3. ECOLOGICAL INFORMATION

Back to top

3.1 Habitat types present on the site and assessment for them

Annex I Habitat types Site assessment
Code PF NP Cover [ha] Cave [number] Data quality A|B|C|D A|B|C
      RepresentativityRelative SurfaceConservationGlobal
1170  info      0.00   
1240  info      6.73826  0.00 
2110  info      2.70261  0.00 
2120  info      15.9049  0.00 
2230  info      3.88342  0.00 
2250  info  X     3.40244  0.00 
2260  info      3.05622  0.00 
3170  info  X     0.00         
5330  info      6.12464  0.00 
5420  info      0.545026  0.00 
  • PF: for the habitat types that can have a non-priority as well as a priority form (6210, 7130, 9430) enter "X" in the column PF to indicate the priority form.
  • NP: in case that a habitat type no longer exists in the site enter: x (optional)
  • Cover: decimal values can be entered
  • Caves: for habitat types 8310, 8330 (caves) enter the number of caves if estimated surface is not available.
  • Data quality: G = 'Good' (e.g. based on surveys); M = 'Moderate' (e.g. based on partial data with some extrapolation); P = 'Poor' (e.g. rough estimation)

4. SITE DESCRIPTION

Back to top

4.1 General site character

Habitat class % Cover
N0185.30
N048.92
N054.02
N081.76

Total Habitat Cover

100

Other Site Characteristics

The island of Elafonisos is located at the south-western corner of Crete. It is separated from the opposite coast by a shallow strait about 150 m in width. The island is oblong with a maximum length of 1500 m and a maximum width of 500 m although for the most part Elafonisos has a width of 150-300 m. The maximum altitude (39 m) is observed at the rocky western part while the rest of the area is principally a sandy lowland. Rocks and cliffs are found only on the periphery, along the coastline (with the exception of the eastern corner of the island). The extended beach of Elafonisos is characterised by the dominance of sanddunes with the well developed community Ammophiletum arenariae. A significant population of Pancratium maritimum (sea-lily) is found in this zone. Thickets of Juniperus oxycedrus ssp. macrocarpa, also on maritime sands, occupy the area behind the Ammophiletum community. Other species met in this scrub zone are: Anthyllis hermanniae, Silene sedoides, Lotus creticus ssp. cytisoides, Ipomoea stolonifera, Orobanche versicolor, Plantago squarrosa. On the rocky coasts that exist in certain parts of the island the following plants grow: Atriplex halimus, Crithmum maritimum, Inula crithmoides, Capparis orientalis, Euphorbia dendroides, Ficus carica. Finally, the central part of Elafonisos is occupied by phrygana (dwarf shrubs) with the following species predominating: Coridothymus capitatus, Phagnalon graecum, Ballota pseudodictamnus, Hyparrhenia hirta, Ruta chalepensis.Similar communities to the ones mentioned above are found on the opposite Cretan coast as well. The monastery of Chrysoskalitissa is located few kilometres prior to Elafonisos island with its surrounding area covered by characteristic phryganic vegetation intermixed with maquis, garigue and other scrubs. The following species predominate: Erica manipuliflora, Pistacia lentiscus, Ceratonia siliqua, Anthyllis hermanniae, Calicotome villosa etc. Studies carried out in this area revealed a very rich cliff flora, comprising many rare Greek endemics or species with discontinuous geographical distribution. Certain floristic elements of this area are worth mentioning: Bellevalia brevipedicellata, Cretan endemic, known only from this part of western Crete; Verbascum arcturus, Origanum dictamnus, Petromarula pinnata and Allium rubrovitatum, Cretan endemics; and lastly Campanula saxatilis, Viola scorpiuroides and Achillea cretica, species whose geographical distribution is of residual character. Gypsum steppe vegetation dominated by the perennial grass Lygeum spartum is found near Chrysoskalitissa. Juniperus oxycedrus and J. phoenicea arborescent matorrals are found in the inner zone together with an evergreen sclerophyllous scrub dominated by Pistacia lentiscus, Ceratonia siliqua and Olea europaea. The hygrophilous Tamarix parviflora together with the exotic-looking shrub Nerium oleander form narrow galleries and small groves along the banks of streams present in the area.Finally, the marine component of the site comprises sandbanks, shallow sea inlets and reefs.

4.2 Quality and importance

The island of Elafonisos and the opposite Cretan coast are separated by a relatively narrow zone of shallow waters over permanently submerged sandy sediments of the sea-floor. This combination along with the sand dunes that exist in the island constitute a very important and unique geological formation. Needless to say that apart from the natural beauty, the ecological value of the landscape is considerable since rare bio-communities constitute part of the above mentioned sand dunes; a formation which becomes rearer due to sand removal and the building of hotel complexes. The site is also characterized by a variety of habitat types, most of them fairly well conserved (typical ammophilous and halophytic flora, dune juniper thickets, Juniperus oxycedrus and J. phoenicea arborescent matorrals, Oleoceratonion tall scrub communities, calcareous cliffs; one of the most diverse and endemic-rich groups of communities). The flora of the site is rich in common species and also contains endemics, local endemics and species with geographical distribution of residual character. It is one of only 100 or less sites in the European Community where the plants Androcymbium rechingeri and Ipomoea stolonifera still exist. The area is also very important for migratory birds both as a resting and as a breeding place. The quality of the site lies on social and cultural reasons as well because on its historical associations (in 1824, at Easter Day, Ibrahim pasha killed 850 women and children who had taken refuge in the island; here also there is the grave of the drowned at the shipwreck of Imperatrice in 1907) and the archaeological site in the island (Apollo's sanctuary). Finally, one should not fail to mention that the site, being of great aesthetic value, can be used as a holiday-recreation area. OTHER IMPORTANT SPECIES WITH MOTIVATION D Plants: Ipomoea stolonifera (Ipomoea imperati) and Centaurea pumilio are considered vulnerable in Greece and Europe (IUCN Red Data List) and are included in the checklist of threatened plants in the CORINE biotopes manual. Furthermore they are protected by the Greek Presidential Decree 67/1981. Viola scorpiuroides is considered rare in Greece and Europe (IUCN Red Data List) and is protected by the Greek Presidential Decree 67/1981. Lygeum spartum belongs to the desert-like floristic element, occurring only in steppe communities in Crete in Greece (it occurs at similar habitats in Spain, Sardinia, Sicily, Italy in Europe); it is one of the very rare grasses in Greece (Damanakis & Scholz, 1990). Distribution in Europe: at similar habitats.

4.3 Threats, pressures and activities with impacts on the site

The most important impacts and activities with high effect on the site

Negative Impacts
RankThreats and pressures [code]Pollution (optional) [code]inside/outside [i|o|b]
MD03.03b
ME01.03b
MF02.01.02b
MF02.03.03b
MF03.01i
MF03.02.05b
HF04i
MF05.01b
MF05.05b
MG01.01.01b
MG01.04.03b
HG02.08i
MH01b
MH03.01b
ML05b
MM01.07b
Positive Impacts
RankActivities, management [code]Pollution (optional) [code]inside/outside [i|o|b]

Rank: H = high, M = medium, L = low
Pollution: N = Nitrogen input, P = Phosphor/Phosphate input, A = Acid input/acidification,
T = toxic inorganic chemicals, O = toxic organic chemicals, X = Mixed pollutions
i = inside, o = outside, b = both

5. SITE PROTECTION STATUS

Back to top

5.1 Designation types at national and regional level:

Code Cover [%]
GR00100.00

6. SITE MANAGEMENT

Back to top

6.1 Body(ies) responsible for the site management:

Organisation:PREFECTURE OF CHANIA
Address:
Email:

6.2 Management Plan(s):

An actual management plan does exist:

Yes
No, but in preparation
X
No

 

7. MAP OF THE SITE

Back to top No data

SITE DISPLAY