Lake Shkodra (Lake Scadar)

Country/territory: Albania

IBA criteria met: A1, A4i, A4iii, B1i (2000)
For more information about IBA criteria, please click here

Area: 14,000 ha

Protection and Preservation of Natural Environment in Albania

Site description (2000 baseline)
A large freshwater lake in north-east Albania (also known as Lake Scutari), on the border with Yugoslavia (Montenegro). Oligotrophic and generally shallow except for a few very deep parts. Approximately one third of the lake lies within Albania, the remainder lies in Montenegro (Skadarsko Jezero, site 038). The main human activities are fisheries, extensive agriculture, hunting and tourism. Fisheries are the most important activity and in places are very intensive.

Key biodiversity
This is an important site for wintering waterfowl, especially Phalacrocorax pygmeus and Phalacrocorax carbo. Several wintering waterfowl counts have been carried out; about 13,000 wintering waterfowl were counted in January 1995 and 1996, and 30,682 waterbirds (representing 26 species) were counted during 2-19 January 1997. Wetlands International have carried out earlier counts on the Montenegro side of the lake.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2024) Important Bird Area factsheet: Lake Shkodra (Lake Scadar). Downloaded from on 29/02/2024.