Mechka Fish-ponds

Country/territory: Bulgaria

IBA Criteria met: A1, A4i, B1i, B2, C1, C2, C3, C6 (2005)
For more information about IBA criteria please click here

Area: 2,738 ha

Bulgarian Society for the Protection of Birds
Most recent IBA monitoring assessment
Year of assessment Threat score (pressure) Condition score (state) Action score (response)
2013 very high very unfavourable low
For more information about IBA monitoring please click here

Site description
Fish-ponds overgrown with reeds, situated close to the bank of the River Danube. The aquatic vegetation is dominated by Phragmites, Trapa, Nymphaea, as well as by Typha in some places. In the western part of the ponds there is a seasonally flooded forest of Fraxinus, Tilia, Ulmus and Acer, as well as a small river fully overgrown with shrubs, acacia and grass. The ponds are surrounded by dry hills overgrown with acacia and steppe-like vegetation. Human activities includes fishery, reed-cutting (`Other' land-use, below), and hunting.

Key biodiversity
The ponds are of global importance for breeding and migrating Aythya nyroca, migrating Phalacrocorax pygmeus and wintering Pelecanus crispus, and are one of the most important sites in Bulgaria for breeding Ixobrychus minutus. Species of global conservation concern that do not meet IBA criteria: Anser erythropus (max. 1 in winter), Branta ruficollis (max. 20 in winter), Haliaeetus albicilla (1 breeding pair; 2-7 birds along river in winter), Aquila heliaca (max. 2 on passage), Acrocephalus paludicola (max. 1 on passage). Significant proportion (³1%) of national population breeding at site: Tadorna ferruginea (1 pair), Porzana pusilla (1 pair).

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2022) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Mechka Fish-ponds. Downloaded from on 09/08/2022.