C3. Enhancement of juniper regeneration
The purpose of this action is to protect the existing natural regeneration of junipers and to enhance, wherever needed, the seedling populations.p. In these fragile ecosystems, Juniper regeneration is extremely important for an ‘ecosystem-healthy’ population structure and, consequently, for the conservation and restoration of habitat type 2250*. Seedlings and saplings of juniper species are known to suffer (and/or be decimated) by various biotic and abiotic factors (such as predation, grazing, trampling, overexposure to light, drought, wind etc). In each of the Cretan sites, these factors will be separately identified and quantified and the appropriate technical interventions will be applied; such interventions will include, among others, microfencing, shading and microhabitat modifications. In addition, and on the basis of the results of action A.3 and the guidelines of action A.8, seedling population enrichment will be applied, to the appropriate extent, in those sites or localities where the population composition is severely deficient of juvenile individuals.