Cyril and Methodius Route – Cultural Route of the Council of Europe

Kroměříž - Kvasice

Zahlinice Ponds

The Záhlinické rybníky Nature Park is a unique area on the middle Morava River. It includes the complex of Záhlinice Ponds, adjacent meadows and floodplain forest in the localities of Filena and Zámeček. It was declared in 1995 and covers an area of 500 ha. The Záhlinice Ponds lie south-west of the town of Hulín, are fed by the Rusava and Mojena rivers and consist of the main ponds Nový, Pláňavský and Doubravický. The terrain is mostly flat with an average altitude of 186 m. The ponds are the most important ornithological site in Central Moravia.

All large ponds are interwoven and divided into several water areas by an extensive network of dykes. On their banks, large areas of reeds rustle in the wind, the dykes are planted with avenues of trees, thousands of fish splash in the water and an unprecedented number of water birds can be seen on the water surface. Around 270 species of birds have been repeatedly observed here, 135 of which are breeding birds. The combination of ponds, meadows and floodplain forest has created an area of high landscape value, which fulfils an important ecological function as a regional biocentre.

More than 100 species of bird species are permanent inhabitants of Záhlinice Ponds. During large migration routes, birds use the ponds as a breeding ground for short stopovers and resting. Among the permanent inhabitants of the ponds we can see the great cormorant, the ashen and white heron or the spoonbill.

The ponds, originally built in the 14th century, were later expanded in 1547-1573 by Jan Skála of Doubravka, who later became bishop of Olomouc and had his name changed to the better sounding Jan Dubravius. Doubravice, a former solitude in the middle of the ponds, is named after him. At a much later time a poultry farm was built here, today it serves the fishing association and there is also a small fallow deer preserve.