Uploaded by Pavle Cikovac

Topoclimatic observations regarding conservation of climate microrefugia in the Opuvani do doline, maritime Mediterranean Dinarides of MontenegroP. Cikovac C. Küfmann

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Topoclimatic observations regarding conservation of climate microrefugia in the Opuvani
do doline, maritime Mediterranean Dinarides of Montenegro
Cikovac P.*, Küfmann C.
Department of Geography, University of Munich (LMU), Luisenstraße 37, 80333 Munich, Germany. – e-mail: pavle_cikovac@yahoo.com
*corresponding author
Keywords: microclimate, microrefugia, doline, cold-air pool, climate change, Dinarides
Naturally occurring refugia in topography-controlled cold-air pools (CAPs) are increasingly discussed for their
potential to buffer some impacts of global warming. For this purpose, we assessed air temperatures in a
recently detected doline refugia on Mt Orjen (Opuvani do, 1580 m, Csbx’’ – maritime mediterranean climate,
SE-Dinarides, Montenegro) and compared them to decadal observations of the station with the lowest mean
annual temperature (MAT) in Montenegro (Žabljak, 1450 m, Dfs’’bx’’ – sub-continental boreal climate, MAT
2011-2020: 6,4°C).
We observed 15 days with frost in summer 2021 (Tmin: June -6.3°C, July -1.8°C, August -2.3°C). At Žabljak
summer decades were frost free. In the sinkhole averaged mean summer quarter temperature in 2021 was
13,3°C, decadal average at Žabljak is 15,5°C. In the sinkhole averaged autumn quarter temperature in 2021
was 4,2°C, at Žabljak the decadal average is 7,3°C. In December 2020 the sinkhole had an average temperature
of -2,3°C, in Žabljak decadal December average is -1,7°C. The sinkhole saw an absolute minimum temperature
in January of -29,2°C, the decadal minimum at Žabljak is -23,9°C. Snow cover extended 2021 to 182 days with
the last snowmelt on June 15th.
Our observations confirm that thermal conditions in topography-controlled CAPs facilitate habitat selection
by frost-hardy (glacial) biota. Examined snow-bed and shrub heath communities in the climate microrefugia
are composed of resilient and isolated cold-adapted arctic-alpine (Dryas octopetala, Oxytropis dinarica),
alpine (Salix retusa, Heliosperma pusillum, Plantago atrata, Viola zoysii), Dinaric-Apennine (Crepis aurea ssp.
glabrescens, Scabiosa silenifolia), Eurosiberian (Allium schoenoprasum, Coeloglossum viride, Androsace villosa),
European-W-Asian (Leontodon hispidus) and SE-European taxa (Saxifraga federici-augustii, Edraianthus
In conclusion, CAPs offer suitable topoclimatic conservation areas for climate change resilient conservation.
They buffer arctic-alpine plants and alpine organisms in cold microhabitats through cold-adaptive selection
sieves, which are particularly important influence on edaphic indicators of frost action and snow cover
microrelief variation.
Oral Presentations: Palynology and Paleobotany, Vegetation Science and Plant Ecology