Credit: SPA/RAC, Simone Modugno

Patok–Rodoni Bay: under the magnifying glass of the scientists


Cape Rodoni is a spectacular strip of land entering the Adriatic Sea. Located about 30km north of Durres and 30km south of the border between Albania and Montenegro, it is the outermost peninsula of Albania at the north of Durres. All around, the landscape is typical of the Mediterranean maquis, with its unique colours and scents. The cape itself is a geological formation of Miocene sandstone-clay banks, strongly eroded and generally barren. The area is peculiar and of great interest for scientific research on marine ecosystems.

An accumulative sandy coastline characterizes this part of the coast of Albania. The seabed within the bay is entirely silty and sandy: all homogeneous and flat without particular pre-coralligenous or coralligenous habitats. The two rivers and the lagoons have a strong influence on the shape of the coast and the sea bottom. The estuaries often change their position and can feed alternatively the sea or the lagoon located between them. Furthermore, the rivers' movements create instability of the coast with subsequent erosion and accretion periods, making the coastal area less safe for boat navigation or mooring.

The marine survey conducted in Patok-Rodoni Bay, Albania, in Autumn 2020, within the framework of the GEF Adriatic Project and implemented in Albania and Montenegro by UNEP-MAP Coordinating Unit with PAP/RAC and SPA/RAC, was the first one of its kind in Albania. Following the Barcelona Convention's Integrated Monitoring and Assessment Programme (IMAP), it aimed at assessing several Ecological Objectives at once. The great biodiversity values in the area make Cape Rodoni one of the best coastal sites candidates for future Marine Protected Area (MPA).

The marine survey has been documented in this video where all key players explain the activities and the outcomes.