German Federal Agency for Nature Conservation (BfN)


Results from the Working Group on Marine and Coastal Sites

A joint German government and Länder working group on Habitats Directive reporting obligations for marine and coastal sites, led by Dr. Jochen Krause, has completed its work.

A set of assessment matrices for Habitats Directive Annex I marine habitat types serve as the basis for meeting monitoring and reporting obligations under Article 11 and 17 of the Directive. General principles for rating the conservation status of marine habitat types (including calculation modes for aggregating assessment criteria) are applied to species in accordance with adopted recommendations.1.

Species characteristic to a habitat are listed under a special assessment criterion, Vollständigkeit des lebensraumtypischen Arteninventars (‘Completeness of species inventory characteristic to habitat’). The criterion aims to reflect a habitat’s functional structure, which is not evaluated elsewhere. Species characteristic to a habitat can occur in multiple habitat types and so are not the same as ‘type’ species.

The species lists are not exhaustive. Species may be added or removed as knowledge develops. For habitat mapping purposes, the species lists need to be adapted to regional circumstances. Thresholds for some habitat and impact parameters may also need to be set on a region-specific basis.

Inventories of characteristic species for each habitat type are a key conservation focus in the EU reporting obligations. Active monitoring of specific characteristic species is not necessary, however, as species are merely used as indicators for the conservation status of a given habitat type. It is enough to know species are present; data on abundance, trends, etc. are optional.

Explanatory notes specific to the three main assessment criteria – habitat structure, species inventory and impairments – are given in the prefaces to each habitat type group.

Assessment Matrices (downloads in German only)
Open sea and tidal areasGroup 11 habitat types (PDF file)
Sea cliffs and shingle or stony beachesGroup 12 habitat types (PDF file)
Atlantic and continental salt marshes and salt meadowsGroup 13 habitat types (PDF file)
Sea dunes of the Atlantic, North Sea and Baltic coastsGroup 21 habitat types (PDF file)

Schnitter, P., Eichen, C., Ellwanger, G., Neukirchen, M. & E.Schröder (Eds.) (2006): Empfehlungen für die Erfassung und Bewertung von Arten als Basis für das Monitoring nach Artilel 11 und 17 der FFH-RL in Deutschland. – Berichte des landesamtes für Umweltschutz Sachsen-Anhalt (Halle), Sonderheft 2.

Last Change: 12/06/2008