LIFE Project Cover Photo

Conservation and Management of Priority Wetland Habitats in Latvia

Reference: LIFE13 NAT/LV/000578 | Acronym: LIFE_Wetlands



Active raised bogs are highly important in the maintenance of global biodiversity, the storage of water and carbon, and the world’s climate system. Nevertheless, around half of all Latvian raised bogs have been negatively affected by human activities and invasive alien species. This includes bogs that are now located within specially protected nature areas, such as those covered by this project.

Human activities that have been particularly damaging to the raised bogs have been drainage, peat extraction, forest planting and land reclamation for agricultural and other uses. These interventions have tended to dry out the land and destroy the bog habitats. Fallen trees also damage the sites if not managed appropriately.

The invasion of the alien species Heracleum sosnowskii has particularly affected areas of the priority habitat Petrifying springs with tufa formation (Cratoneurion) in the project area. The invasive species negatively impacts on the growth of bryophytes – such as Palustrella commutata and Cratoneuron filicinum – which naturally characterise this habitat.


The LIFE_Wetlands project aims to secure a favourable conservation status for priority bog habitats in protected sites in Latvia. It seeks to diminish the threats that cause problems for the habitats and restore conditions for their natural regeneration. It will also introduce good practices for the long-term protection and management of the sites.

The project will restore the site hydrology of areas negatively affected by drainage and land reclamation interventions. It will principally block ditches with the aim of securing consistent waterlogging of the sites. It will also seek to guarantee their long-term maintence and introduce specific management of the priority habitat Transition mires and quaking bogs.

Restoration of hydrology aims to enable the natural regeneration of raised bog habitats in the long-term. To facilitate this process, the project will work to re-establish colonisation of the wetland area with essential Sphagnum species.

The project will engage local stakeholders with the the restoration and management activities and objectives. It will also promote good practice in the management of wetland habitats to an interested European audience.

Expected results:

  • Restoration of site hydrology over 501 ha of bog areas affected by drainage;
  • An overall significant and sustained improvement in the condition of the active raised bog habitat (7110*);
  • Conservation and management of 15 ha of Petrifying springs with tufa formation (Cratoneurion) (7220*) and Fennoscandian mineral rich springs and spring fens (7160);
  • Management of Transition mires and quaking bogs (7140) over 7 ha;
  • Improvement in knowledge of best practice for management and restoration of active raised bog and petrifying springs with tufa formation habitats in the EU; and
  • Practical involvement of local stakeholders, including schoolchildren and teachers in raised bog restoration.


    Reference: LIFE13 NAT/LV/000578
    Acronym: LIFE_Wetlands
    Start Date: 02/06/2014
    End Date: 30/11/2018
    Total Eligible Budget: 983,649 €
    EU Contribution: 590,189 €
    Project Location:


    Coordinating Beneficiary: University of Latvia
    Legal Status: PAT
    Address: Raina Blvd.19, LV-1050, Riga, Latvia Latvija
    Contact Person: Māra PAKALNE
    Email: Send Email
    Website: Visit Website

    LIFE Project Map



    • Bogs and Mires


    • wetland
    • nature conservation


    • 3160 - Natural dystrophic lakes and ponds
    • 7110 - Active raised bogs
    • 7120 - Degraded raised bogs still capable of natural regeneration
    • 7140 - Transition mires and quaking bogs
    • 7150 - Depressions on peat substrates of the Rhynchosporion
    • 7160 - Fennoscandian mineral-rich springs and springfens
    • 7220 - Petrifying springs with tufa formation (Cratoneurion)
    • 91D0 - Bog woodland


    • Liparis loeselii
    • Drepanocladus vernicosus


    Type Code Name
    SPA LV0000130 Ziemelu purvi
    SPA LV0200100 Gaujas nacionalais parks
    SCI LV0503300 Raunas Staburags


    Name Type
    University of Latvia Coordinator
    ELF(Estonian Fund for Nature (SA Eestimaa Looduse Fond)), Estonia Participant
    E-Buv(E Buvvadiba LTD), Latvia Participant
    RIDemo(RIDemo), Latvia Participant
    BUND(BUND Diepholzer Moorniederung), Germany Participant