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

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1.1 Type

B

1.2 Site code

MT0000020

1.3 Site name

L-Inħawi tax-Xlendi u tal-Wied tal-Kantra

1.4 First Compilation date

2004-04

1.5 Update date

2018-05

1.6 Respondent:

Name/Organisation:Environment and Resources Authority
Address:               
Email:natura.2000@era.org.mt
Date site proposed as SCI:2004-04
Date site confirmed as SCI:2008-03
Date site designated as SAC:2016-12
National legal reference of SAC designation:Government Notice No. 1379 of 2016, in accordance with the Flora, Fauna and Natural Habitats Protection Regulations, 2016 (S.L. 549.44)

2. SITE LOCATION

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2.1 Site-centre location [decimal degrees]:

Longitude:14.227200
Latitude:36.030600

2.2 Area [ha]

296.2900

2.3 Marine area [%]

0.0000

2.4 Sitelength [km]:

0.00

2.5 Administrative region code and name

NUTS level 2 code Region Name
MT00Malta

2.6 Biogeographical Region(s)

Mediterranean (100.00 %)

3. ECOLOGICAL INFORMATION

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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
1240  info      7.28  0.00 
3170  info      0.03  0.00 
5330  info      29.69  0.00 
5430  info      5.11  0.00 
8210  info      6.34  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)

3.2 Species referred to in Article 4 of Directive 2009/147/EC and listed in Annex II of Directive 92/43/EEC and site evaluation for them

Species Population in the site Site assessment
G Code Scientific Name S NP T Size Unit Cat. D.qual. A|B|C|D A|B|C
      MinMax  Pop.Con.Iso.Glo.
BA229Alcedo atthis       
BA243Calandrella brachydactyla       
BA243Calandrella brachydactyla       
BA010Calonectris diomedea    100  300     
BA288Cettia cetti       
P4079Cremnophyton lanfrancoi    20  100   
P4092Elatine gussonei       
BA123Gallinula chloropus       
P4084Hyoseris frutescens       
BA022Ixobrychus minutus       
BA459Larus cachinnans       
BA459Larus cachinnans       
P4114Linaria pseudolaxiflora               
BA383Miliaria calandra       
BA281Monticola solitarius       
M1307Myotis blythii               
BA023Nycticorax nycticorax       
BA337Oriolus oriolus       
P4085Palaeocyanus crassifolius       
BA072Pernis apivorus       
BA464Puffinus yelkouan    30     
M1303Rhinolophus hipposideros    25   
BA303Sylvia conspicillata       
  • Group: A = Amphibians, B = Birds, F = Fish, I = Invertebrates, M = Mammals, P = Plants, R = Reptiles
  • S: in case that the data on species are sensitive and therefore have to be blocked for any public access enter: yes
  • NP: in case that a species is no longer present in the site enter: x (optional)
  • Type: p = permanent, r = reproducing, c = concentration, w = wintering (for plant and non-migratory species use permanent)
  • Unit: i = individuals, p = pairs or other units according to the Standard list of population units and codes in accordance with Article 12 and 17 reporting (see reference portal)
  • Abundance categories (Cat.): C = common, R = rare, V = very rare, P = present - to fill if data are deficient (DD) or in addition to population size information
  • 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); VP = 'Very poor' (use this category only, if not even a rough estimation of the population size can be made, in this case the fields for population size can remain empty, but the field "Abundance categories" has to be filled in)

3.3 Other important species of flora and fauna (optional)

Species

Population in the site

Motivation

Group CODE Scientific Name S NP Size Unit Cat. Species Annex Other categories
     MinMax C|R|V|PIVVABCD
  • Group: A = Amphibians, B = Birds, F = Fish, Fu = Fungi, I = Invertebrates, L = Lichens, M = Mammals, P = Plants, R = Reptiles
  • CODE: for Birds, Annex IV and V species the code as provided in the reference portal should be used in addition to the scientific name
  • S: in case that the data on species are sensitive and therefore have to be blocked for any public access enter: yes
  • NP: in case that a species is no longer present in the site enter: x (optional)
  • Unit: i = individuals, p = pairs or other units according to the standard list of population units and codes in accordance with Article 12 and 17 reporting, (see reference portal)
  • Cat.: Abundance categories: C = common, R = rare, V = very rare, P = present
  • Motivation categories: IV, V: Annex Species (Habitats Directive), A: National Red List data; B: Endemics; C: International Conventions; D: other reasons

4. SITE DESCRIPTION

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4.1 General site character

Habitat class % Cover
N060.38
N263.29
N2760.27
N0824.95
N236.51
N054.60

Total Habitat Cover

100.00000000000001

Other Site Characteristics

This Natura 2000 site is one of the largest protected areas in the Maltese Islands. It extends from the central part of the island of Gozo to the South-Eastern coast, and includes the whole valley systems of Wied Xlendi and Wied tal-Kantra, both of which end in the inlet of Xlendi. The sides of these valley systems include cultivated agricultural land, rock escarpments with natural vegetation, and promontories bounded by sea cliffs along the coast on either side of Xlendi Bay. Wied tal-Lunzjata forms the upper part of Wied Xlendi and its diverse habitats attract a large and diverse avifauna, and in fact this area serves as a staging post for a number of migratory birds. Wied tal-Lunzjata is one of the few remaining valleys of the Maltese Islands with a permanent freshwater supply. Various species that are associated with this freswater habitat are found in the valley bed, and these are very rare and/or endemic and/or found only in a few other localities or are restricted to Wied ix-Xlendi valley system. The plateau off the area of Ta' Kantra provides a unique plant community that thrives on an exposed flat conglomerate bed of phosphatic nodules which in itself also represents a rare geological feature in the Maltese Islands.

4.2 Quality and importance

This Natura 2000 site is one of the largest protected areas in the Maltese Islands. The area extends from the central part of the island of Gozo to the South-Eastern coast, and includes the whole valley systems of Wied Xlendi (starting from its tributaries, namely Wied il-Ħmar, Wied tal-Lunzjata, Wied il-Għarab and Wied tal-Għancija) and Wied tal-Kantra, both of which end in the inlet of Xlendi. The sides of the valley system includes cultivated agricultural land, rock escarpments with natural vegetation, and promontories bounded by sea cliffs along the coast on either side of Xlendi Bay. Wied tal-Lunzjata is one of the few remaining valleys of the Maltese Islands with a permanent freshwater supply. Various plant, mollusc, crustacean, insect and other invertebrate species that are associated with this freshwater habitat are found in the valley bed. Such species are either very rare in the Maltese Islands and found only in a few other localities or are restricted to Wied ix-Xlendi valley system. Plant species include Phragmites australis, Arundo donax, Apium nodiflorum, the rare Apium graveolens, Ranunculus muricatus, Mentha pulegium and Rumex spp. A small number of individual Populus alba trees are found further downstream. Important fauna includes the only known Maltese population of Haemopis sanguisuga; the best population of the Maltese freshwater crab Potamon fluviatile lanfrancoi in Gozo; the only population of Planorbis moquini; very good populations of the otherwise rare Physa acuta; the endangered Pseudamnicola melitensis and Mercuria cf. similis (this species may be present as an endemic form); and a small population of Pisidium pea-mussels that are otherwise known from another two localities in the Maltese Islands. Furthermore, the valley system also provides adequate breeding ground for Discoglossus pictus. Wied tal-Lunzjata forms the upper part of Wied Xlendi and its diverse habitats attract a large and diverse avifauna, including crakes, rails, egrets and herons that are associated with thick reed growth along the stream bed; as well as harriers and honey buzzards, and flycatchers, warblers, chats, thrushes, finches and buntings that are attracted to the dense vegetation cover mostly provided by carob trees. Overall, Wied tal-Lunzjata serves as a staging post for such migratory birds. The vertical sea cliffs themselves support typical rupestral communities. Important plant species include the endemic Hyoseris frutescens, Atriplex lanfrancoi (= Cremnophyton lanfrancoi), and Cheirolophus crassifolius (=Palaeocyanus crassifolius), all Annex II species (Habitats Directive) and Matthiola incana subsp. melitensis. Trochoidea gharlapsi, a mollusc endemic to the Maltese Islands, is also found here. These cliffs and other sea caves found within the site also provide suitable nesting habitat for the bird species Monticola solitarius, Calonectris diomedea (Annex I species, Birds Directive) and Puffinus yelkouan (Annex I species, Birds Directive).The promontory areas support maritime garrigue, other coastal garrigue and steppe communities. Various garrigue communities occur and these are characterised by Euphorbia dendroides, E. melitensis, Thymbra capitata and Erica multiflora. The garrigue in the area of Dahar il-Fekruna promontory within Wied tax-Xlendi represents the only known locality for the endemic Muticaria macrostoma mamotica. The very rare Euphorbia characias is known from Xlendi. Maltese plants of this species require further investigation, since they show some similarity with Euphorbia melapetala, which is a Sicilian endemic of uncertain taxonomic status. While providing suitable habitat for garrigue species, these areas also contain Mediterranean temporary ponds (Annex I Habitats Directive priority habitat)- an important habitat for plant species, including Elatine gussonei (Habitats Directive, Annex II), Damasonium bourgaei, Callitriche truncata, Chara vulgaris, Zannichellia melitensis, Ranunculus saniculaefolius and Lythrum hyssopilfolia. Such temporary freshwater ponds have not been thoroughly studied yet and it is expected that this habitat supports several other species of flora and fauna as well. Among the fauna species, Branchipus sp. is known to occur. The area is also characterised by traditional rubble/dry stone walls, constructed to retain soil. These walls are important for Crocidura sicula calypso, an endemic shrew (Habitats Directive, Annex IV) and various other reptiles including Coluber viridiflavus carbonarius, Chalcides ocellatus tiligugu, Tarentola mauritanica, Hemidactylus turcicus turcicus and Podarcis filfolensis maltensis. A considerable portion of land is used for agriculture. Some agro-species are reported from the area, including the very rare and declining Glebionis segetum. However, such fields were not surveyed in detail and more information is required. The plateau off Ta' Kantra provides a unique community based upon Salsola melitensis (=Darniella melitensis), Limonium melitense, Anthemis urvilleana, Hedysarum glomeratum, Senecio leucanthemifolius, Silene colorata, Hordeum marinum and Avena wiestii. This community thrives on an exposed flat conglomerate bed of phosphatic nodules which in itself also represents a rare geological feature in the Maltese Islands. Xlendi is also very important because it houses endemic and sub-endemic species including: Anacamptis urvilleana (Habitats Directive, Annex II), Allium melitense, Anthirrinium siculum, Calendula sicula, Chiliadenus bocconei, Daucus rupestris, Iris sicula, Senecio bicolor and Epidola melitensis.The area is also the type locality for the endemic liverwort Riccia melitensis and the only known locality from where the endemic Maltese Tineid Moth Antitinea deluccae has been recorded.

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]
Lb
Li
Mi
Mb
Mi
Mi
Mb
Mi
Mi
Mi
Hb
Mi
Mi
Mi
Mb
Mi
Ho
Mi
Mi
Lo
Lo
Mi
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

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6. SITE MANAGEMENT

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6.1 Body(ies) responsible for the site management:

Organisation:Environment and Resources Authority
Address:
Email:natura.2000@era.org.mt

6.2 Management Plan(s):

An actual management plan does exist:

X
Yes Name: L-Inħawi tax-Xlendi u tal-Wied tal-Kantra
Link: https://era.org.mt/en/Pages/Natura-2000-Management-Planning.aspx

No, but in preparation
No

 

7. MAP OF THE SITE

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INSPIRE ID:MT.ERA.MT0000020
Map delivered as PDF in electronic format (optional)
Yes
No

SITE DISPLAY