The Merzse marshland in District XVII, near the airport in south-east Budapest, is the only surviving area of its kind in the capital, with its own special microclimate, fauna and flora. Residents and schoolchildren are regular visitors to the nature trail, also frequented by foxes and deer. Recently, however, it has been threatened with dehydration, despite the work of the local municipality. Budapest Airport is now jointly funding a multi-stage process of rehabilitation, the first of which is the creation of a Merzse marshland Recovery Plan.
The Merzse marshland, the last swamp area in the capital, has
been significantly reduced over the years to 27 hectares. It regularly dries out, exacerbated
by water-collecting devices interfering with the natural habitat.
In recent decades, the environment has completely changed, with the construction of the airport and railway line, as well as arable land cutting off significant tracts from the swamp. Nowadays, water scarcity has become more and more common, so the Rákosmente Municipality and Budapest Airport are jointly preparing a recovery plan to save the area.
“The most important task is to create water replenishment, which is a multi-step process. As a first move, a recovery plan is being prepared, worth almost 20 million forints, funded by District XVII and the airport operators” – Budapest Airport.
In addition to deer and foxes, special species such as the northern crested newts, the marsh tortoise, the European bee-eater and bitterns, as well as badgers and weasels. In spring, yellow irises and grape hyacinths bloom, and the nature trail six kilometres long is lined with many protected plants.