Tuz Lake Special Environment Protection Area, Central Anatolia, Turkey: The EUNIS Habitat Classification and Habitat Change Detection between 1987 and 2007

Orhan MERGEN, Cagasan KARACAOGLU

Ekoloji, 2015, Issue 95, Pages: 1-9

DOI: https://doi.org/10.5053/ekoloji.2015.06

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Abstract

Tuz Lake is one of the most important natural areas in the world with its distinguished flora and fauna. It is the second largest lake in Turkey. The lake is located within the boundaries of three cities, Aksaray, Konya, and Ankara. With-in the study area, there are 64 residential areas. Tuz Lake is located in a closed basin and has a geologically tectonic origin. The Lake and the surrounding areas were declared as an area of natural importance in 1992 and consequently as a Special Environmental Protection Area(SEPA), in 2000 was designated as the largest in the country with 7,414 km². The aim of this study was to determine the habitat types in the study area according to the European Nature Information System (EUNIS) and identify the changes in these habitat types for the last 20 years using the Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and Remote Sensing (RS) techniques. As a result, 12 EUNIS habitat types and the changes in these habitats for the year 1987 and 2007 were determined. Habitat types for 1987 and 2007 remained the same (12) but, the Surface Running Waters (C2) habitats in 1987 were transformed into small–scale ornamental and domestic garden areas (I2.2) in 2007. This finding shows the effect of anthropogenic pressure on the Tuz Lake Special Environmental Protection Area (SEPA). The results of this study have implications for the management practices of Tuz Lake SEPA.

Keywords

EUNIS, GIS, habitat classification, habitat change, Tuz Lake

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