FAST- Fight Alien Species Transborder

Project in Numbers

Duration: 30 mounths

Start Date: 12.11.2020

End Date: 11.05.2023

Partner N.: 5

Project progress:

Total Budget: 1.559.120,00 €
ERDF Contribution of which: 1.260.227,00 €

The FAST project aims to combat the introduction, naturalization and spread of invasive alien species that harm biodiversity, a phenomenon that is particularly important in cross-borderareas, for the greater ease of interchange, and which requires timely and urgent action.

The activities will be carried out within sites with terrestrial and aquatic environments with a high cross-border character.

Four Sicilian sites of the Natura 2000Network have been identified (Riserva naturale Foce del Fiume Simeto and Lago Gornalunga, Riserva naturale Fiume Fiumefreddo, Riserva naturale Foce del Fiume Irminio e Riserva naturale Vallata del Fiume Ippari) and three Maltese sites (L-Inħawi tal-Buskett u tal-Girgenti, L-Inħawi tax-Xlendi u tal-Wied tal-Kantra, Il-Magħluq tal-Baħar ta' Marsaskala).

FAST will proceed with the recognition of invasive alien species and their classification into priority scales, their containment and/or eradication and the identification and management of pathways (especially two-way cross-border) and introduction and diffusion vehicles. Guidelines will then be drawn up and best practices adopted.

The creation of a dedicated website and communication plans on environment will ensure the maximum dissemination of the results achieved.

Expected results:
0.5 sq. km of surface areas subject to IAS (Invasive Alien Species) interception actions, their containment and recovery of the terrestrial biodiversity of the two islands in 4 Natura 2000 sites in Sicily and 3 in Malta;
1,000 citizens/users trained and made aware of environmental issues and involved in monitoring actions;
20 stakeholders, technicians and researchers institutional partners specifically trained for the network management of IAS.

The FAST project will help to halt the loss of biodiversity of indigenous species in protected areas on the two islands, through the monitoring and conservation of invasive alien species, and the implementation of effective restoration actions.


The project activities will identify:

n. ≤10 Invasive Alien Species (IAS)catalogued and characterized
n. 30 IAS at risk introduction
n. 15 IAS monitored in protected areas
n. 10 threatened target species and definition of the various types of restoration interventions
n. 4 target species of IAS eradicate/contained

The project activities will carry out 14 environment restoration interventions in areas previously affected by IAS.

Project Lead Partner:

Università degli Studi di Catania - Dipartimento di Scienze Biologiche, Geologiche ed Ambientali


Project Partners:

Ministry for Agriculture, Fisheries and Animal Rights - Plant Health Directorate - Veterinary and Phytosanitary Regulations Department

University of Malta - Institute of Earth Systems - Division of Rural Sciences and Food Systems

Città Metropolitana di Catania - 2° dipartimento - 4° Servizio “Gestione Riserve Naturali”

Libero Consorzio Comunale di Ragusa - Settore V Pianificazione Territoriale e Sviluppo Locale - U.O. Riserve Naturali


    the FAST Project and alien species

    Rassegna Stampa

    Progetto FAST- Cataniatoday _aprile 2021

    Università degli Studi di Catania

    Piazza Università 2 - 95131 Catania (Italia)


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