Slano Kopovo is in Vojvodina, northeast of Novi Bečej and the river Tisa. It is one of the last preserved salt marshes in Serbia. It features unique Pannonian habitats typified by salty, muddy ponds and lakes or their occasionally dry beds. Slano Kopovo is a priceless centre of salt-marsh habitats which is threatened with complete disappearance.
In the distant past, the river Tisa was subject to frequent changes of course and Slano Kopovo is one of its ancient meanders, emerging after the marshes were drained and dykes were built in the 17th and 18th century. The increased evaporation and withdrawal of water from the lowest-lying areas have led to the accumulation of a salt layer sometimes several centimetres thick. Increased heating of the air above the lake and the temperature difference with the surrounding fields give rise to optical and meteorological phenomena such as mirages and spectacular wind phenomena.
The significance of Slano Kopovo is manifold. It is one of the most important and unique bird habitats in Serbia. It is of particular value in that species are found nesting here which are typical of the Ponto-Caspian and sea coasts and not of the Pannonian Plain. This is also a unique stopover point for migratory bird species. With the Tisa close by, species which follow the course of this river and its forest belt readily alight on this wide, open water surface. Slano Kopovo is a favourable environment for cranes, ducks, geese and waders as well as Pied Avocet and Kentish Plover. 203 bird species have been recorded at Slano Kopovo, which is 63% of all the known species in Vojvodina.
A unique salt-marsh community has been preserved at Slano Kopovo. The majority of the vegetation here grows on a solonchak (salty) topsoil which has almost disappeared from the Pannonian region. The most important species are glasswort, annual seablite and pannonic seablite – rare species protected by law. Major mammal species are the European ground squirrel, harvest mouse and the steppe polecat.
Contributing to the wonderful surroundings of Slano Kopovo are the remains of the Arača Church, dating from the 13th century. Like its predecessor from period of the 9th-11th centuries it was built on a peninsula which the Tisa river could not flood even at its highest levels. The Arača was surrounded by water: the Crna Bara pond, the Mali Begej backwater, Veliko Kopovo, Poštaš Kopovo and Bikaš. Around the ruins of the Arača, the old bed of the Crna Bara is still preserved and to this day fills with water in spring.
INFORMATIONLovačko društvo “Novi Bečej” Sonje Marinković 29, 23272 Novi Bečej tel: +381 (0)23 771-076