Riparian and floodplain habitats have deteriorated along the Drava river, mainly due to riverbed degradation. In particular, three types of habitat have unfavourable/inadequate conservation status: alluvial forests with black alder and common ash, water courses with vegetation or aquatic mosses, and alluvial meadows.
Riverbed incision is the most significant pressure affecting natural habitats; it has a substantial impact even on areas kilometres away from the river. Additional threats, such as drainage and lack of water on the floodplain, have also been identified along the Drava. Improper land use can negatively affect water-related species or bird populations. Climate change also impacts freshwater habitats along the river.
WISEDRAVALIFE aims to improve the conservation status and resilience of the three riparian habitats - alluvial forests, water courses and alluvial meadows - on the Croatian-Hungarian stretches of the Drava river. The project will take action to improve the water regime and biodiversity of the riparian forests, restore habitats and control invasive alien species. It also aims to apply new approaches to combat riverbed degradation. Through its work, WISEDRAVALIFE will contribute to the implementation of EU legislation, namely the Birds, Habitats, Water Framework and Flood directives.