IEB Restoration Ecology Group

Profile of the group: 

The Restoration Ecology Group (REG) tests methods suitable for the restoration of natural ecosystems, which can become self-sustaining or require only conventional, extensive management on the long run. The target of restoration is the endemic Pannonian sand grassland that is under protection of the EU (Pannonic sand steppe, habitat code 6260).

Our experiments are currently underway at two locations:
1. The sand dune region and neighbouring anthropogenic landscape of Fülöpháza in the Kiskunság National Park, at the Kiskun LTER siteKiskuninlcuding the study of spontaneous regeneration and restoration of open sand grasslands on abandoned fields
2. Nyíregyháza LEGO factory where reconstruction of forest steppe, a mosaic of steppe oak woods and sand grasslands is taking place

Activities of the group include participation in the work of the Society for Ecological Restoration, European Chapter SER Europe, e.g. conference organization (SER Europe Summer School on Ecological Restoration 2018). Collaboration with projects dealing with the biodiversity science-policy interface like IPBES is gaining importance.

Project logos:

Selected publications:


Halassy M, Botta-Dukát Z, Csecserits A, Szitár K (2019): Trait based approach confirms the importance of propagule limitation and assembly rules in old‐field restoration RESTORATION ECOLOGY 27(4): pp. 840-849.
Katalin Török, Ferenc Horváth, Anna Kövendi-Jakó, Melinda Halassy, János Bölöni, Katalin Szitár (2019): Meeting Aichi Target 15: Efforts and further needs of ecological restoration in Hungary Biological Conservation 235: pp. 128–135.
Kövendi-Jakó, Anna ; Halassy, Melinda ; Csecserits, Anikó ; Hülber, Karl ; Szitár, Katalin ; Wrbka, Thomas ; Török, Katalin (2019): Three years of vegetation development worth 30 years of secondary succession in urban-industrial grassland restoration Applied Vegetation Science 2019;22:138–149.


Katalin Török, Anikó Csecserits, Imelda Somodi, Anna Kövendi-Jakó, Krisztián Halász, Tamás Rédei, Melinda Halassy (2018): Restoration prioritization for industrial area applying multiple potential natural vegetation modeling Restoration Ecology 26: 476-488.


Melinda Halassy, Anand Narain Singh, Rebeka Szabó, Tibor Szili-Kovács, Katalin Szitár and Katalin Török (2016): The application of a filter-based assembly model to develop best practices for Pannonian sand grassland restoration Journal of Applied Ecology