IDES - PILOT AREAS PRESENTATION: Koviljsko-Petrovaradinski Rit (SRB)


Koviljsko-Petrovaradinski Rit (KPR) is situated on the left and the right bank of the Danube River, near the City of Novi Sad, capital of Vojvodina Province. It covers the surface of 5886 ha, and its total length is 22 km. It is a home to more than 447 000 inhabitants. Find more information here

The area represents a clearly structured and compact two parts bogland complex within the floodplain of the Danube River. It’s a well preserved mosaic of river arms, ridges, meanders, canals, ponds, reed beds, wet meadows, marshes, pastures and forests. This nature reserve is one of the most important protected areas in the floodplains of Danube, Tisza and Sava rivers in Serbia, that have been designated during the past 30 years (Puzović et al., 2015).












@A. Bezdan

The core values of this area are represented by the preserved and diverse orographic and hydrographic forms of marshes (islands, backwaters, ponds, swamps, channels, oxbow lakes); the preserved, abundant native plant communities in marshes (forests, wet meadows, reeds, rushes); the diversity and abundance of habitats (39 habitat types priority for conservation), flora (443 taxons), fauna (206 species of birds, 24 species of fish, 42 species of insects, 11 species of amphibians and 7 species of reptiles) and particularly by the presence of rare and endangered species. The predominant land cover/use type is forestry (69% of the surface), completed by large meadows and pastures (15%) and water areas(8%).

Koviljsko-Petrovaradinski Rit is declared as special nature reserve by national law in 1998. It is also recognized as important by international organizations (Ramsar site since 2012, IBA (1989), IPA (2005), ICPDR statuses (2004), Danube Network Protected Areas, Dartmoor National Park Authority, and EMERALD status).

The main problems in the pilot area are the spread of invasive plant species, intensive forestry, reed burning, illegal fishing and hunting, illegal forest cutting, infrastructure developments and climate change (drought, low water level), and as well as the problems related to water quality (untreated municipal and industrial wastewater, groundwater pollution, water drained from agricultural landscape,  existence of permeable septic tanks, etc).

Due to the natural, but also socio-economic, cultural and historic importance of Koviljsko-Petrovaradinski Rit, numerous ecosystem services that provides and conflicting nature of its use, it is selected as a pilot area to test the IDES tool.

Why is it suitable for testing the IDES tool?

Most common uses of KPR are directly related to ecosystem services (ES), that ultimately bring direct or indirect benefit to people.

Provisioning ES  

The area is mostly used by forestry, almost 70% [1], but also it is used for hunting and traditional fishing.

Ratno ostrvo nearby the city Novi Sad, as the main actual aquifer for the city’s water supply, is an integral part of the Pilot area and one of the main groundwater resources for the water supply. Also, the area of Krčedinska ada meadow provides food for 180 horses, 100 donkeys, 400 cattle, 550 pigs and 500 sheep, etc, a total of 2000 livestock [2]. Traditional grazing is important because animals optimize the use of nutrients and its circulation in nature. 

Regulating ES

The Pilot area is almost entirely under the constant influence of floodwater. The area control floods by water-retaining and slowing the flow downstream after a flood wave. It provides significant capacity for storing high waters and mitigating its consequences [2]. Besides the Danube water, the area is also receiving inland waters – from ameliorative canal network. It collects excess groundwater and surface water from the area and transfers it to Koviljski rit by pumping station. These waters bring certain pollution from the surrounding land which should be controlled to protect the Reserve [3]. 

Cultural ES

Natural characteristics, settlements, cultural and historical values of the Pilot area are huge advantages for tourism development: scientific, educational, excursion, fishing, hunting, ethno tourism, etc. The settlement of Kovilj has a rich cultural heritage: there are several archeological sites as well as the Serbian Orthodox Monastery from 13. century, protected from 1949. as a cultural monument. Also, Koviljsko-Petrovaradinski Rit provides services for recreational activities and educational activities.



[1] SNR ”Koviljsko-petrovaradinski rit”.  Proposal for Special Nautre Reserve of  first category protection.. Institute for Nature Conservation of Vojvodina Province, Novi Sad, 2010. /In Serbian/

[2] Stojnić, N. (Editor) (2015). Economic evaluation of ecosystem services of the Special Reserve of Nature “Koviljsko-Petrovaradin rit”. Novi Sad: Provincial Institute for Nature Protection.

[3] Spatial plan for the area of special purpose the SNR “Koviljsko-petrovaradinski rit”. Urban and spatial planning institute of Vojvodina Province, Novi Sad, 2012. /In Serbian/


Programme co-funded by European Union funds (ERDF, IPA, ENI)