Coordinating Beneficiary 

University of Crete - Natural History Museum of Crete

Natural History Museum of Crete (NHMC) was established as a department of the Faculty of Science of the University of Crete since 1980, being a pioneer institute at national and European level in several aspects of biological and geological diversity. The first aspect regards research on the environment of the Eastern Mediterranean at all levels, i.e. from basic to applied research, from the cellular to the level of the ecosystems, and from state of the art applications and techniques to management of protected areas and continuous interventions on environmental issues of local and national interest. The NHMC focuses in studying aspects of the Eastern Mediterranean diversity in the fields of Geology, Palaeontology, Ecology, Evolution, Biogeography, Phylogeography, Phylogenetics, Systematics and Taxonomy. At present, four departments are fully operational: The Zoological, the Botanical, the Mineralogical and the Geological combined with the Paleontological department. It is the only Natural History Museum in Greece, dealing with all aspects of natural environment and occupies a significant number of specialists in biological and geological diversity. In NHMC permanent Exhibition Halls, of 3500 m2, in the city of Heraklion, Crete, the natural environment of the eastern Mediterranean area with special emphasis on Greece and Crete, is displayed. Additionally, having participated and participating in several national, European and international conservation and management projects concerning protected areas and priority species, NHMC has a vast in the field of conservation and management in Crete, with great results. In 2012, NHMC was awarded by the Emmanuel Benakis prize of the Academy of Sciences in Athens for its complex educational, research, writing and publishing deed, its exemplary organization and structure that designate it as one of the most significant, for its specialty, museum globally, in which scientific research is being advanced and make it equivalent to similar foreign institutions and education sites. Also, NHMC was awarded the Certificate of Excellence of 2013 by TripAdvisor as the NHMC became by the visitors as one of the excellent tourist destinations worldwide.

Associated Beneficiaries

Decentralized Administration Authority of Crete Directorate / General for Forests and Agriculture / Directorate of Coordination and Supervision of Forests

The main objective of the Directorate is the co-ordination, supervision and control over the four Forest Directorates of Decentralized Administration Authority of Crete. It is in constant co-operation with the Greek Ministry of the Environment, Energy and Climate Change and its aim is the attendance of problems related to forest law enforcement in Crete. The Directorate is staffed with experienced, qualified, scientific personnel that supervises and controls the Four Forest Directorates of Crete (one in each district). According to its legal Structure the Directorate is divided in five departments under the following titles:

Department A: Supervision of Forests

Department B: Planning of Forest Development

Department C: Protection of Forests and Forested Areas and the Application of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES)

Department D: Forest matters

Department E: Forest mapping

Furthermore, it is responsible to inform and to make sensitive the general public in matters related to Forest Policy. It organizes a great number of meetings and presentations to promote the role of Forest ecosystems and the need of their protection mainly from human activities such as illegal grazing and forest fires caused by humans and takes all the necessary legal measures to protect and promote forests, improve biodiversity, prevent forest fires, preserve endemic species of Flora and Fauna, record forest land and provide financial support to forest investments through EC Regulations 2080/1992 and 1257/1999.

Hellenic Ornithological Society

Hellenic Ornithological Society (HOS) was founded in 1982 and is a non-governmental, nation-wide, non-profit Organization, the only one in Greece that works exclusively for the protection of wild birds and their habitats. HOS aims to:

  • study and protect wild birds and their habitats in Greece
  • provide scientific information and data to the Greek Government and the European Union
  • inform, educate and sensitize the public.

HOS has undertaken large scale monitoring work on bird populations and has participated actively in the conservation and management of protected areas in Greece. HOS is a member of BirdLife International, the European Environmental Bureau and the European Union for Coastal Conservation. The continuous efforts and contributions to the protection of Greece’s Natural Environment led to the receipt of the Environmental Protection Award by the prestigious National Academy in 1993.