Supported by Nature - nature based solution learning sites for a sustainable Baltic Sea
Supported by Nature

Recreating a Stone Reef in Møn, Denmark: A Collaborative Effort

26 June 2024
Our partner, Vordingborg Municipality, is embarking on an exciting journey to restore a stone reef in the Møn Biosphere Reserve. This project is not only a testament to environmental stewardship but also a vital step towards revitalizing a depleted marine ecosystem.
Technical details

The Historical Context

Several hundred years ago, large quantities of stone were extracted from the seabed to serve as building material for harbors, piers, and buildings due to the scarcity of quality building stone on land. This extensive stone fishing significantly depleted the marine ecosystem. By recreating stone reefs, we can foster the growth of blue mussels and seaweed, creating habitats and feeding grounds for cod, eels, and other fish.

The Start of the Journey

On Baltic Sea Day, August 31, 2023, Vordingborg Municipality brought together local associations and interested citizens for an information meeting about the Supported by Nature project. The meeting also introduced plans to establish a Stone Reef Association to mobilize local efforts.

Photo: Information meeting about the project Supported by Nature and plans to establish a Stone Reef Association (Copyright: Vordingborg Municipality)

Community Engagement and Formation of the Stone Reef Association

The project and plans for the Stone Reef Association gained significant interest. Many attendees volunteered to plan a founding general assembly and draft statutes for the new association. Almost two months later, Vordingborg Municipality held the founding general meeting, where the statutes were approved, and a board of directors was elected for “Møn Stenrev,” the newly formed association.

Collaborative Efforts and Future Plans

To ensure close local cooperation, the Biosphere area has a permanent seat on the association’s board for the duration of the Supported by Nature project. This arrangement allows Vordingborg Municipality to collaboratively develop the project with local stakeholders from the beginning and involve them in necessary tasks, paving the way for constructing the stone reef as a learning site.

Photo: Katrine Dietrich at the meeting about a stone reef at Møn (Copyright: Vordingborg Municipality)

Research and Mapping

Vordingborg Municipality is collaborating with Aarhus University in developing a map of historical natural stone reefs in Danish waters. The map will be used to identify the best sites for re-establishment. Historical knowledge will be supplemented with new studies on water depths and bottom conditions, guided by researchers from the university. Local diving, sports fishing, and nature conservation associations will assist in collecting data for this research.

Moving Forward

This initiative marks the beginning of a robust local partnership centered on the new stone reef association. Vordingborg Municipality is already discussing with the association how to involve local citizens in restoring biodiversity in the Baltic Sea, fostering community ownership. The associations are eager to participate in communication efforts at the future learning site, and these activities are planned together with Vordingborg Municipality.

Photo: The planned location for the stone reef at Møn (Copyright: Vordingborg Municipality)

The recreation of the stone reef in Møn represents a significant step towards restoring marine biodiversity and fostering community involvement in environmental conservation. We look forward to the continued collaboration and the positive impact it will bring to the region.