The management of Natura 2000 grasslands aiming at habitat types, bird species and the Marsh Fritillary will be re-organised, both with short- and long-term effects.
Nature conservation and agriculture will together develop and realise workable solutions, also considering the individual operational situation of the full-time and part-time farms.
The project area consists of the Special Protection Area „Hessische Rhön“ (SPA 5425-401) and the embedded Natura 2000 sites (SAC5325-305, 5325-308, 5525-351, 5323-303) as part of the Rhön Biosphere Reserve designated by UNESCO. The low mountain range has mainly been shaped by volcanism during the early Tertiary, and features divers mosaics of habitats in a historically developed cultural landscape. The share of grassland is above average, and the height difference in the SPA is more than 650 m.
Restoration and new establishment of habitat typs on 160 ha like: Mountain hay meadows (6520), species-rich Nardus grasslands (*6230), seminatural dry grasslands (6212) and low hay meadows (6510).
On 65 ha new establishment of habitats for the Marsh fritillary (Euphydryas aurinia).
On 200 ha optimisation of habitats for meadow-breeding birds such as Meadow Pipit (Anthus pratensis), Common snipe (Gallinago gallinago), Whinchat (Saxicola rubetra) and corncrake (Crex crex)
Enlargment by about 20% of extensively used sites in habitats of the bird species Red-backed Shrike (Lanius collurio) and Northern Shrike (Lanius excubitor) as well as the Tree Pipit (Anthus trivialis) to a minimum of 80 ha.
On 500 ha optimisation of rough grazing for meadow-breeders and shrike species.
Establishment of 20 feeding ponds for the Black Stork (Ciconia nigra).
In summery, 1005 ha habitats for species will be restored, new established or optimised.
picture: Arnolf Müller
picture Red-backed Shrike: Jürgen Holzhausen