On the afternoon of the fourth day since the fire broke out in the Dadia-Lefkimi-Soufli National Park, fire-fighting forces on the ground and in the air continued to battle the flames on Sunday, with the creeping fire constantly changing direction while rekindlings complicated the fire-fighting effort.
The village of Dadia was evacuated as a precaution during the night as the fire headed slowly – due to the absence of wind – but nevertheless steadily toward the village, changing direction shortly before it reached the firebreak, which had been further widened on Saturday.
No one is currently in a position to predict how the rising winds forecast from Sunday afternoon in the area by the weather service, and a switch in wind direction from easterly to southerly, will affect the fire’s behaviour.
Apart from a government delegation led by Climate Crisis and Civil Protection Minister Christos Stylianides, there have also been visits to the park management unit by a delegation from main opposition SYRIZA-Progressive Alliance and the Metropolitan of Didimotichos, Orestiada and Soufli Damaskinos, who noted that the Dadia monastery had been evacuated.
Meanwhile, all members of the park management unit are present and assisting fire fighters in their work, providing information on the road network and vegetation in each area. Working together with a local logging cooperative, they are helping to open a firebreak in front of the bird observatory and the facilities of the unit’s centre and the village of Dadia.
The national park is home to three of Europe’s four species of vulture, and of the only black vulture colony in the Balkans. A team to provide first aid and treatment to injured animals is due to arrive in the area on Sunday, in collaboration with Anima and other animal welfare groups.
On the day after the fire is put out, the Post Fire Biodiversity Hub of the EU’s Technical Support Instrument will be activated to record any repercussions the fire has had on biodiversity and the population of the black vulture and other vultures, especially.