Research and maintaining of biodiversity in historical structures of agricultural landscape of Slovakia
Project coordinator: RNDr. Marta Dobrovodská, PhD.
The main goal of the project is to gain a new knowledge about extend and distribution of historical structures of agricultural landscape (HSAL) in Slovakia and their significance for the maintenance and preservation of local biodiversity in traditionally managed agricultural landscape. These areas are now becoming rare and thus highly valuable in Europe. They have irreplaceable ecological, cultural and historical value. They represent a mosaic of small-scale arable fields and permanent agricultural cultivations. As main sources of local biodiversity, they are linked to balks and margins of cross fields tracks, original meadows and pastures, after collectivization abandoned grass-grown former arable fields, small wetlands or other low production or unfavorable areas. Since these areas are not at present a subject of special protection, there’s a high risk that in the near future, due to abandonment and subsequent forest succession and urban pressure, decline or even irreversible loss of biodiversity linked to such specific biotopes is probable. Up till now, there’s not been any consistent HSAL inventory or research carried out, furthermore there’s also a lack of consistent scientific background.
This proposed project aims to resolve this problem by carrying out a thorough inventory of HSAL, coupled with interdisciplinary research (vegetation and animal species survey, evaluation of abiotic conditions and socio-economical conditions, social survey) and implementation of an optimal utilization proposal. The research will take place in 3 pilot areas - Svätý Jur, Hriňová and Liptovská Teplička, which represent basic landscape types with a presence of HSAL.
The strategy for protection and management of valuable biotopes of HSAL in pilot areas with respect to principles of sustainable development will be elaborated. This stage will be based on results of the basic research and synthetic evaluation of results.
The integral part of the project is also implementation of project results. The main goal of implementation process is to inform the Slovak society about the outcomes of the project and thereby increase the ecological awareness and knowledge about the HSAL in Slovakia. A particularly important part of this activity is the implementation of the Strategy principles among land-users in pilot areas as well by other relevant stakeholders.
The project is supported from the EEA Financial Mechanism, Norwegian Financial Mechanism and state budget of the Slovak Republic.