Cooperation between Tourist Board of the Municipality of Kostrena, Speleological club Estavela and Croatian Biospeleological Society started in 2007 when two caves were explored: Bunetova jama cave and cave Špilja u uvali Predpeć. An exploration of another small cave, the Špilje u uvali Svežanj, located right next to the beach, and this time in cooperation with Kostrena Municipality continued in 2008. After interesting discoveries in these three caves, in 2009 CBSS started the systematic research within the above-mentioned project, in cooperation with the Municipality of Kostrena and the Tourist Board of the Municipality of Kostrena.
Altogether 9 natural and artificial caves were explored during field trips in 2009. With the help of our guide Mr. Bruno Puharić we discovered some forgotten caves in Kostrena like cave Mali Štumbur or unsurveyed pit Karlova jama. Future speleological exploration of some of these caves is yet to come. During biospeleological explorations, cave fauna was collected and photographed, air humidity, soil, water, and air temperature and some other chemical parameters of water have been measured. The most famous cave in Kostrena, Urinjska špilja has also been visited. This anchialine cave has a big underground lake with seawater at the bottom and freshwater at the surface of the lake. There speleodiver Branko Jalžić took some biological samples.
Numerous interesting species have been recorded. Some of the most interesting are: probably new centipede species from the genus Lithobius, cave prawn Troglocaris anophthalmus from brackish water and false scorpion Chthonius ischnocheles reductus. All material collected during 2009 is still in the process of identification by the biologists: Jana Bedek, Tvrtko Dražina, Sanja Gottstein, Branko Jalžić, Ana Komerički, Marko Lukić, Roman Ozimec and Martina Pavlek.
Results of research until 2009 were presented at the lecture Biospeleological research in the Kostrena Municipality at the congress Znanstveno-stručni skup „Život, kultura i povijest Kostrene” on the 29th October 2008. Paper Preliminary speleological and biospeleological research in the Kostrena Municipality (authors: M. Lukić , R. Reš, R. Ozimec, J. Bedek, D. Reš, I. Markanjević) was published in the Proceeding of the same congress.
Future work and continuation of the project are planned for 2010. Most interesting caves will be biospeleologicaly explored once more to collect more biological samples, and aquatic and terrestrial cave fauna will be filmed. Educational info panels and leaflets about cave fauna will be made.
Marko Lukić – firstname.lastname@example.org (project leader)
Jana Bedek (project assistant)
Mr. sc. Roman Ozimec
Martina Pavlek and
Lana Đud and
Special thanks to our guides Mr. Bruno Puharić and Mr. Karlo Franelić.