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Location Poland, pomorskie
Central coordinates 18o 57.00' East  54o 21.00' North
IBA criteria C1, C2, C3, C4, C6
Area 642 ha
Altitude 0 - 2m
Year of IBA assessment 2010

Ogólnopolskie Towarzystwo Ochrony Ptaków

Site description A 6 km stretch of the lower Wis³a (Vistula) river from Przegalina sluice to the river mouth, including a strip of meadows along the right bank (between Mikoszewo and Drewnica). Habitats include sandy peninsulas, mobile sandflats, small sandy islets, temporary lakes and adjacent dunes, freshwater lakes on either side of the Wis³a channel, and a small patch of coastal forest. The vegetation is very species-rich and at the river mouth shows all stages of natural succession from bare sandflats to bushes and forest on the oldest areas. Willow Salix has been planted to stabilize dunes. The meadows are flooded in spring (occasionally at other seasons) and are grazed, mainly by cattle.

Key Biodiversity A very important site for wintering, migrating and breeding waterbirds, regularly holding well over 20,000 individuals, sometimes exceeding 150,000 birds. In late summer and early autumn wader passage is intense, with very high rates of turn-over; Calidris species dominate (up to 8,000 waders ringed in a season). When flooded, the meadows near the southern border of the IBA support thousands of ducks and waders. Other waterbirds supported in high numbers include Clangula hyemalis (30,000, winter) and non-breeding terns in summer/autumn (max. 1,000 Sterna sandvicensis; max. 3,000 Sterna hirundo). Overall, at least 22 waterbird species have been recorded breeding, with at least 120 waterbird species recorded in the non-breeding season.

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Common Goldeneye Bucephala clangula winter  2004-2009  1,500-22,700 individuals  good  C3  Least Concern 
Goosander Mergus merganser winter  2004-2009  400-6,500 individuals  good  C3  Least Concern 
Horned Grebe Podiceps auritus passage  2004-2009  10-300 individuals  good  C2  Vulnerable 
Eurasian Curlew Numenius arquata passage  2007-2009  100 individuals  good  C1  Near Threatened 
Little Gull Hydrocoloeus minutus passage  2007-2009  1,500-5,000 individuals  good  C2  Least Concern 
Sandwich Tern Thalasseus sandvicensis passage  2007-2009  2,000 individuals  poor  C2  Least Concern 
Sandwich Tern Thalasseus sandvicensis breeding  2007-2009  300-570 breeding pairs  good  C2, C6  Least Concern 
Common Tern Sterna hirundo breeding  2007-2009  300-360 breeding pairs  poor  C6  Least Concern 
Little Tern Sternula albifrons breeding  2007-2009  40-50 breeding pairs  good  C6  Least Concern 
A4iii Species group - waterbirds winter  2004-2009  31,700 individuals  good  C4   

Protected areas

Protected area Designation Area (ha) Relationship with IBA Overlap with IBA (ha)  
Mewia Lacha Nature Reserve 150 protected area contained by site 150  
Mewia Lacha (acha) Nature Reserve 150 unknown 150  
Vistula river mouth Baltic Sea Protected Area (Helcom) 1,747 protected area contains site 642  


IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Forest Alluvial and very wet forest; Broadleaved deciduous woodland; Mixed woodland; Native coniferous woodland  10%
Shrubland Scrub  5%
Grassland Humid grasslands; Steppes and dry calcareous grassland  25%
Wetlands (inland) Rivers and streams; Standing freshwater; Water fringe vegetation  -
Coastline Salt marshes; Sand dunes & beaches  -

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
fisheries/aquaculture 50%
forestry 5%
tourism/recreation 5%
agriculture 5%
nature conservation and research 35%
hunting -

Protection status National Partial International None150 ha of IBA covered by Nature Reserve (Mewia £acha, 150 ha).

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2016) Important Bird and Biodiversity Area factsheet: Vistula river mouth. Downloaded from on 26/10/2016

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