Tuesday, 8 September 2020

VIDEO: Huge Whale Visits Croatia - This Summer's Second Sizeable Visitor

Tuesday, 8 September 2020 – Beyonce and Jay Z might be the biggest stars to visit Croatia this summer, but they're certainly not the biggest in size. In this stunning video, a huge whale visits Croatia

Croatia is never short of celebrity guests. This summer alone, the country's Adriatic shores and islands have been visited by Owen Wilson, Beyonce and Jay Z, and Lepa Brena and Lily Allen. But, such stars are dwarfed in comparison to the latest visitor.

A huge whale visits Croatia this week and its movements have been captured spectacularly by drone footage. In the video from the Blue World Institute, you can see the epic creature side-by-side with a fishing vessel. The boat is not small, yet it looks tiny next to this beast.

Video: A huge whale visits Croatia © Blue World Institute

Shots of this huge whale visits Croatia were taken by drone above the Velebit Channel in Dalmatia. It is not the first visitor of its kind this year. Earlier in the summer, the same Blue World Institute managed to grab some footage of a fin whale in the Adriatic (pictured below). Only last time, they didn't have their drone.

© Blue World Institute

The video was taken by the researchers on Saturday 5 September at the entrance to Novsko ždrilo. They followed the whale for about two hours, up to the Maslenica bridge where he turned back into the Velebit Channel and swam in the direction of Vinjerac.

The researchers took the video of this huge whale visits Croatia to analyze the size and health of the mammal. The footage allowed the researchers to determine that this was not the same animal they filmed in the same area in mid-August. When the whale swam close to their boat, researchers managed to obtain a small skin sample in order to perform a biopsy. They monitored the whale's progress and saw it again on the morning of Sunday 6 September, north of Novsko ždrilo.

For the latest travel info, bookmark our main travel info article, which is updated daily

Read the Croatian Travel Update in your language - now available in 24 languages

Join the Total Croatia Travel INFO Viber community.

Thursday, 2 May 2019

Balkan Pond Turtle Discovered Along Dubrovnik's River Ombla

As Morski writes on the 2nd of May, 2019, after a Balkan pond turtle (Mauremys rivulata) was found along Dubrovnik's Ombla river last year, the news was picked up by the expert public.

Zvonimir Pandža from Rijeka Dubrovačka (Dubrovnik River) found the turtle, and owing to his discovery, he confirmed concretely that the species is in actual fact not extinct in the Ombla river, which was the overall consensus until now. According to locals who live along the Ombla, Balkan pond turtles were a relatively common sight up until the Homeland War broke out. After the war ended, different interventions had been taking place in its natural habitat, which is why the turtles had unfortunately been brought to the brink of extinction over just a few years.

The next important step was to conduct a survey to determine whether or not there were still any individual Balkan pond turtles living in and along Dubrovnik's Ombla river. This research and evaluation was financed by Dubrovnik-Neretva County and was carried out by the Hyla Association in coordination with the Public Institution for Management of Protected Areas of Nature of Dubrovnik-Neretva County. The first survey results, carried out in April 2019, are above all expectations, as they proved that two more river turtle species have been found living along Dubrovnik's Ombla river. There is now a realistic possibility that there is still a small population of Balkan pond turtles living permanently at that location.

The study also includes other animal groups that inhabit this more quiet and rural area of Dubrovnik, with the aim of collecting data on the remaining natural values ​​of this protected area. We are witnessing the increasing urbanisation of the surrounding area of ​​Dubrovnik, and with the proper care and adequate spacial planning, there is still a good possibility of preserving its natural world and its native species, including the river and pond turtles.

The deaths of established populations of creatures such as Balkan pond turtle along the Ombla river is a perfect example of how nature and its species can disappear almost entirely in just a few years if proper spacial planning is not taken into account. The decision now lies solely with us - Do we want to preserve the natural world and its animals of the areas in which we live?

Dubrovnik-Neretva County is the only area in the whole of the Republic of Croatia where both types of freshwater turtles (Balkan pond turtles and European river turtles) can be found. Both species are strictly protected, and the river turtle holds the unfortunate status of an endangered species.

The largest population of such river turtles lives in Konavle, the southernmost municipality of Croatia which borders Montenegro, and a population of them appears stable in the village of Majkovi. In Stonsko Polje, Dubrovnik's Ombla River and the delta of the Neretva River, such turtles unfortunately find themselves on the verge of extinction, and it is still not clear whether or not there is a population near Lumbarda at all.

The main threats to the survival of river and pond turtles are the expansion of construction zones into their habitat and the deliberate release of foreign, invasive types of turtles that are frequently kept as pets.

Make sure to follow our dedicated lifestyle page for much more. If it's just Dubrovnik and the extreme south of Dalmatia you're interested in, give Total Dubrovnik a follow or check out Dubrovnik in a Page.

Saturday, 20 April 2019

Second Biospeleological Expedition Begins on Pelješac Peninsula

Pelješac is home to much more than just stunning views, golden sunsets and incredible wine, as if that wasn't enough. Home to a wide array of wildlife and many caves, this rugged peninsula in southern Dalmatia is as interesting academically as it is beautiful on the surface, and 2019 brings with it yet another biospeleological expedition of the area.

As Morski writes on the 19th of April, 2019, field research across the entire Pelješac peninsula was conducted at the end of 2018, in close cooperation with the public institution for the management of protected areas of nature of Dubrovnik-Neretva County, the Croatian Biospeleology Society and the Breganja Association. The announcement of the beginning of the second such biospeleological expedition - Pelješac 2019, has arrived, which has been being held since the 19th of April 2019 and will continue until May the 1st, 2019.

In the scope of the Pelješac expedition this year, the plans are to explore this rocky area's numerous caves and pits located along different parts of the peninsula and to obtain more detailed information on the distribution of certain groups and species living underground and within said caves. The expedition is likely to gather more than sixty researchers from around the entire region, meaning it will take on a much more international character, and will include the exploration of speleological ocations across the whole of the Pelješac peninsula.

The goals of the expedition include the detailed sampling and photographing the cave fauna as well as topography and the further exploration of newly found pits and caves.

On the two terrains that preceded the main expedition, the emphasis was placed on finding caves and pits known only in literature and by Pelješac's local population. Over twenty caves and pits of various sizes and in numerous locations were explored during the last such expedition, caves suitable for exploration to seek out any animal species living there were recorded, cave fauna was collected, and entry and exit coordinates were noted.

During this expedition, over 100 hundred known caves across the Pelješac peninsula will be explored.

Stay up to date by following our dedicated lifestyle page.

Thursday, 28 March 2019

Zagreb Veterinary Students to Learn About Marine Life on Murter

As Morski writes on the 28th of March, 2019, this weekend, the island of Murter will host the first of two sets of field work of Zagreb veterinary students within the "Blue Project - Contribution to the development of the DKU Program at VFZS" project, carried out by the Argonaut association in partnership with the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine of the University of Zagreb, as well as the Pula Marine Education Centre.

The implementation of the project started back in April 2018, and the purpose of the project is to give the Zagreb veterinary students a chance to engage in socially beneficial marine environment conservation projects. Through the projects within the classes, and in cooperation with various civil society organisations, students will learn to properly identify the needs of the community and through the courses they undertake, develop potential solutions - projects that will see them engaged in the local community, according to a report from SibenikIN.

Within this concrete project, the topics that are likely among the most interesting to the Zagreb veterinary students will be the methods and ways of monitoring populations and providing treatment to the Adriatic's protected marine animals, such as sea turtles and dolphins.

In addition to Murter, students will also visit Pula and the Marine Education Center at the Pula Aquarium in mid-April this year.

Students will develop their projects through selected mentoring programs which include but aren't limited to visiting habitats during the winter months and learning how to properly aid a sea turtle who has become too cold, learning about the friendly behaviour of sea turtles and dolphins, what to do when coming across a sick or injured dolphin or sea turtle, and what the procedure is should a dead dolphin or sea turtle be discovered.

At the workshop in Murter, the thematic workshop will focus on dolphins and students will be educated on the development of monitoring protocols, recording the occurrence of protected marine animals - dates, times, geographical positions, the number of animals, their ages, their conditions and the level of potential human impact (maritime traffic, tourism and fishing), as well as the basics of photographing these types of protected marine species.

The project aimed at the Zagreb veterinary students and their further education will go on for eighteen months, more specifically until October 2019, and is co-financed by the European Social Fund (ESF) in the amount of 854,018,21 kuna, with a total value of 1,004,727.31 kuna. The project leader is the Argonaut association from Murter, and the partners of the project are the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine of the University of Zagreb and the Pula Marine Centre. The project is being implemented in the area of Šibenik-Knin County, Zagrebačka, and Istria County.

Make sure to follow our dedicated lifestyle page for much more.


Click here for the original article by SibenikIN

Saturday, 23 March 2019

Cres and Susak Show Why Sheep and Olives Work Well Together

As is the case with many Mediterranean countries, the relationship between olives and the Croatian coast runs deep, it is a story that would take all the time in the world to tell and it boasts a plethora of different personal meanings for many individuals and their families.

Olives and the coast go hand in hand and the entire practice of olive picking has well and truly withstood the test of time and the various winds of change that time has brought with it over the many centuries that have passed. Skills and knowledge are passed down through generations, and traditions are upheld through time.

Despite the modern world in which we're increasingly being dragged feet first into, many families along the Croatian coast, from the extreme south of Dalmatia to the Kvarner region, bring things to a standstill when ''olive time'' comes along. During that special time of year, families are bonded again and again through the picking of the olives, and the work that follows.

As Morski writes on the 22nd of March, 2019, the northern Adriatic islands of Cres and Susak were presented at the fourth International Congress on the revitalisation of terraced landscapes in the Canaries.

Dr. Goran Andlar from the Faculty of Agriculture in Zagreb and Tanja Kremenić from Cres who is currently doing her PhD in Padua discussed the terraced landscape of the Croatian island of Cres, which embodies a kind of olive and sheep cooperation, writes the portal Otoci.net.

''The olive-sheep model was a very interesting component of the presentation to the public, and we take it for granted, it's natural to us. Sheep are natural fertilisers, they're natural cleansers of excess vegetation and they're bred extensively so they does not represent any sort of big extra effort for humans. Why is it so important that we preserve terraced landscapes?

If they're not used, there is a risk of erosion and a loss of fertile anthropogenic soil. They are also very important today because they represent an alternative to mechanised high-intensive agriculture and are an example of the implementation of pertinent concepts of development such as "sustainable development" or the "circular economy" in reality, but here on the ground,'' stated Tanja Kremenić.

At one congress back in 2016, which was held in Padua, the beautiful island of Cres presented this charming sheep-inspired theme with a poster, and then a one-day trip to the island of Cres was organised for the participants of the congress.

Give our dedicated lifestyle page a follow for much more.


Click here for the original article by Otoci.net

Sunday, 3 March 2019

VIDEO: Fishermen Free Large Shark From Net in Savudrija

It isn't every day that you end up with a fish as big as this in your net! A look at the moment when fishermen in Savudrija discovered they might have bitten off a bit more than they could chew (or perhaps those were the thoughts of the unfortunate shark). 

As Morski writes on the 3rd of March, 2019, a large seven-metre-long shark unfortunately became entangled in the net of a fisherman from Savudrija, before being successfully cut free, removed from the net, and returned to the sea. The scene was filmed from an onlooker's standpoint and uploaded onto IstraMet's Facebook page.

While some onlookers and viewers of the video were likely intimidated by the size and power of this large shark, the better-informed among them claim that the unlucky shark is merely a harmless type which feeds on plankton and doesn't pose any threat to human life. The commentators writing below the released video greatly appreciated the selfless act of the fisherman from Savudrija who quickly got to work releasing the distressed shark, with the understanding that the nets in which the animal became tangled suffered damage and had to be cut in order to remove the shark.

The author of the footage, which has attracted well over 40,000 views at the time of writing this, wrote that the job of working to release the animal from the nets lasted for more than half an hour.

"It's great that he [the shark] has been returned [to the sea], finally common sense wins in this little country! I just hope that they really got him totally out of the net and released him completely - which is not seen in this too short video - otherwise his "release'' is in vain, plus the animal is still in shock,'' reads one of the video's comments.

However, according to other information from the field, the fishermen from Savudrija did not release the shark out of mercy, but releasing the shark from the surface wasn't possible, and they were unable to find out whether or not the animal was even alive at all at that point. More precise information on what happened and what type of shark is in question will be released upon inspection by a vet.

Make sure to stay up to date by following our dedicated lifestyle page.

Saturday, 2 February 2019

Young Hunter Films Three Wolves in Split-Dalmatia County

There are three types of large animals living in the Republic of Croatia, the Eurasian lynx, the bear, and the wolf. While these animals do their best to stay well away from human interaction of any kind, there are rare occasions when they make an appearance a little too close to comfort, and even a little too close too home. One young hunter spotted three wolves drinking water in Lovreć, Split-Dalmatia County, causing a panic among locals.

While wolves have been protected in Croatia since 1995, they still carry their fearsome reputation, which may likely be uncalled for. Since these pack animals prefer to stay as far from the spotlight as possible, rarely coming into any form of contact with humans or human settlements, they aren't a common sight. Sadly, when they are seen more than once in an area close to humans, people begin to worry.

As Slobodna Dalmacija/Mladen Nejasmic writes on the 2nd of February, 2019, in the area of ​​Sidoča, in the place called Pozicija near the hamlet of Čolckušići in the Municipality of Lovreć in Split-Dalmatia County, young hunter Marijan Petričević managed to capture a rare video of a small group of wolves, consisting of what appear to be three adult individuals, drinking water on from a quagmire area designed for wild pigs.

The unusual and somewhat alarming picture immediately spread like wildfire across social networking sites, making the small group of Lovreć wolves become big news for a short time.

Many residents of that area claim that those three wolves are part of a larger pack which seem to have territory in the Kamešnica - Zavelim - Sidoč - Biokovo area, and that they are seen more often than usual in these dreary winter conditions.

Because of the large number of predators, the number of wild pigs has been reduced, a situation which is likely to upset hunters who make a living, or who simply live off their meat.

What is worrisome to the locals of Lovreć and other border areas in Split-Dalmatia County is the fact that hunters operating within this region have spoken about the constant presence of about a dozen wolves living permanently in that area.

Make sure to stay up to date with our dedicated lifestyle page for more.


Click here for the original article by Mladen Nejasmic for Slobodna Dalmacija

Sunday, 6 January 2019

Kvarner the Injured Griffon Vulture Found and Treated in Germany

As Morski writes on the 5th of January, 2019, back in October, German rescue workers in Kaditz near Dresden came across an unwell nine-month-old griffon vulture from Kvarner in Radebeul vineyard.

The injured and sickly bird was simply lying exhausted on the ground. Although his wingspan stood at a massive 2.8 feet wide, the unwell bird was exhausted and his weight was a mere kilograms. On his leg he wore a ring labelled "Kvarner", from which his German saviours determined that his country of birth was Croatia, according to a report by Fenix ​​Magazine.

The rescuers collected the unlucky young bird and took him to receive immediate medical attention, in a location at which numerous other sick and wounded bird species are treated.

Over time, the young and rather unfortunate griffon vulture from Kvarner slowly recovered, and his German rescuers named him ''Kvarner'', owing to the ring on his leg. With the proper care and time to heal, Kvarner got better day by day, accumulating extra strength for his return to his native Croatia.

''Now he weighs twice as much than when we first found him. At first he was only eating crumbs, and thanks to the hunters who supported us, he eventually took to eating meat from wild game, and wild boar meat. Now he's even become a little gourmand because instead of eating entrails, he now loves to eat hearts and livers from game animals,'' stated Saskia Keller of the German facility currently treating young Kvarner, who is growing stronger with each passing day.

This young bird of prey from Cres, which is the closest relative of the eagle, will remain in Kaditz until March. He will then be released back to his native Croatia, more specifically in Kvarner bay.

Since a few colonies of such birds can be found on the island of Pag and in the Velebit mountain range, it is estimated that in the Republic of Croatia there are between 110 and 140 pairs of these predatory birds in total.

Make sure to stay up to date with our dedicated lifestyle page for more.

Thursday, 3 January 2019

City of Sisak to Pay Hefty Sum After Woman Falls Victim to Stray Dogs

The police failed to determine the owner(s) of the dogs, but the witnesses said the animals were wandering around the streets of their own accord for at least one month before the event itself. The City of Sisak will now have to pay up for the damages incurred.

As VLM/Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 3rd of January, 2019, the City of Sisak will have to pay 43,420 kuna in compensation to Sisak woman Ljubić Rendulić-Holzer, who in September 2014 fell victim to the antics of stray dogs in the centre of Sisak, in an incident in which she fell to the ground and suffered numerous injuries to her feet and head.

The City of Sisak now has to settle a little more than 11,000 kuna in court costs on top of that, as was decided upon a few days ago by a judge at the Sisak Municipal Court, Andrea Vasiljević.

Ljubica Rendulić-Holzer, who is otherwise a judge at the County Court in Sisak herself, suffered injuries while talking to a friend in the street. Not far from her, three stray dogs without any supervision or control were playing. During whatever game the dogs were playing, they collided with her, knocking her down and causing her to hit her head and hurt her foot.

Emergency services took her to hospital where medical help was provided, after which the event was reported to the police. She continued to suffer from injuries caused by the incident at the end of March 2015, and had to go through as many as 60 physical therapy sessions.

The City of Sisak stated in its defense that the dogs cannot be determined as strays, and that if they were, damages would have to be sought via Sisak's veterinary station, which, at that time, had a contract with the City of Sisak on dealing with apparently abandoned and stray animals. However, the photograph taken by the victim's wife shortly after the attack clearly shows the scene of the event, in which three dogs of medium size without collars are involved, this was confirmed by witnesses as well.

The police could not determine the owners of the dogs from the photograph taken by the victim's husband, but witnesses claim that that same pack of dogs had been wandering around freely for about a month before the incident took place.

The court therefore ordered that the payment of damages be paid by the City of Sisak because it was determined that the city itself retains the right of supervision and control of the services provided by the Sisak veterinary station, and since the dogs had been wandering around for more than a month prior to the event, it is apparent that Sisak's city officials hadn't done their job properly. Therefore, the city budget has to pay a total of 43,240 kuna to the woman for physical ailments, psychological damage, loss of earnings, and medical treatment costs.

Otherwise, problems like this caused by dogs are quite common in Croatia and in neighbouring countries, although this was not a direct attack by dogs.

Make sure to stay up to date with our dedicated news page for more.


Click here for the original article by VLM for Poslovni Dnevnik

Sunday, 30 December 2018

Croatian Mountain Rescue Service Save Abandoned Dog From Cave

The Croatian Mountain Rescue Service (HGSS) has become well known for its witty Facebook statuses over the past couple of years or so, but not everything can be looked back at with a giggle. An animal in danger is one of them.

From warning tourists and other would-be mountaineers to perhaps refrain from trying to tackle mountains in the summer sunshine with no water and wearing only flip flops, to letting those who fancy themselves as Olympic swimmers that that pretty little island over there is actually a lot further away than it looks from the mainland, the Croatian Mountain Rescue Service, made up of generous volunteers from all types of jobs and walks of life, has been making us laugh in spite of the often ridiculous and downright dangerous scenarios they continually need to rescue people from.

Of course, not all of these stories and scenarios can have a funny spin put on them, and when it comes to abandoned animals suffering and in danger at the hands of careless humans, there can be no jokes. What there can be, however, is a very happy (and lucky) ending.

As Index writes on the 29th of December, 2018, as the Croatian Mountain Rescue Service reported, during the excavation of a cave in the area of Bratiškovci (Šibenik-Knin County), members of SOS HKP "Sveti Mihovil", which included four members of HGSS Šibenik who were the leaders of this expedition, heard the distressed barking and whining of a dog coming from somwhere in the dark and unwelcoming cave.

They immediately embarked on an action to locate and rescue the injured and underweight, clearly mistreated animal. Using specialist speleological techniques, the unlucky, unwell and frightened dog was located and pulled out of the cave to safety. Given the fact that when 112 was called, not one of the competent associations bothered to even respond, the dog was taken to safety and is currently being housed at the "Sea" (More) apothecary.

The members of HGSS Šibenik, as well as members of SOS "Sveti Mihovil", once again demonstrated their bravery, humanity and superior ability and talent to deal with serious situations in potentially dangerous caves.

Make sure to stay up to date with our news and lifestyle pages for much more.

Page 3 of 7