4th June 2024 – Ecosystem and biodiversity

What exciting projects are lined up for the conference? Get ready for a burst of innovation and inspiration!

Download the conference program: Conference 4.6.2024 – Ecosystems and biodiversity

Czech version: Konference 4. 6. – Ekosystémy a biodiverzita

New wetlands and ponds as places for biodiversity in the Liberec region 2021 – 2024
  • Innovation and application of the method of incubation of eggs of endangered fish and lamprey species in the environment of maternal streams/University of Ostrava

In our project, we focused on the biodiversity of aquatic ecosystems.  Project is related to the research project entitled: „The development of the methodology for the incubation of the selected salmon species and the innovation of the fish egg incubation boxes “(TJ02000229), funded by the Technology Agency of Czech Republic. This project was finished in the May 2021 and the main outputs was the methodology, which is unique in the ability to support and to restore the reofil fish population directly in the natural river habitat and to assess the potential risks for selected species caused by the impact of climate and land use change. The receiving of funding for this project will lead to further innovation of the methodology to another species such as Common barbel, Vimba vimba, Common nase, Ide and lampreys. The project is propose for 26 months (1.3.2022 – 30.4.2024) and there are four institution involved in the delivery project outputs, which will help to share good practice to the Norway and Great Britain. The incubation will be held in ten selected localities in the Czech Republic and will be actively supported by local fish communities, non-governmental organizations and nature protection authorities.

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  • Nature-friendly fisheries management as a tool for protecting valuable pond ecosystems/ENKI o.p.s.

The main purpose of this project is to protect the fishpond ecosystem in nature protection areas and to present a combine nature conservation with sustainable fish management not only for professional fishing companies. We are going to prove alternative fish management and its sustainability on our own and partner ponds. This type of management will fully meet the criteria of good functioning and biologically rich ecosystems. The acquired knowledge will be presented not only to professionals but also to the general public as examples of good practice. The process of alternative fish management provides a great opportunity to reproduce and release different species of fish back to their original habitats. This will increase the impact of this project on the protection of ecosystems and regional species diversity of fish.

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  • Floating islands – support of biodiversity and water quality/Czech Society for Ornitology – South Moravian Brench

In the past, several projects have been implemented to support the breeding of the Common tern in South Moravia, in particular the installation of wooden floating platforms and the care of natural islands in reservoirs. Our organisation has been systematically working on the protection of this species since 2008. The aim of this project is to prepare more technically suitable and resistant islands that will be more sustainable and safer. This will ensure even more effective protection not only of this animal species. In addition, as part of the innovation, floating islands with living vegetation will be created, which will create more suitable conditions for baby birds. At the same time, vegetation platforms will support nutrient reduction in highly eutrophic pond waters, create shelter for fish and provide alternative habitat for other species, they can serve as nesting habitat for other bird species. This is an innovation that has not been tested in practice before, making this project unique.

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Innovation and application of the method of incubation of eggs of endangered fish and lamprey species in the environment of maternal streams

 

  • Application of innovative procedures in the eradication of invasive crayfish in the Czech Republic/T. G. Masaryk Water Management Research Institute

The aim of the project is the practical verification of new results of applied research aimed at the control and eradication of non-native crayfish species. The sub-objectives of the project are as follows: To carry out interventions against populations of non-native crayfish species in six selected sites of watercourses and reservoirs. To test the feasibility of the proposed measures in practice and thus provide an example of good practice for watercourse managers, waterworks owners and nature conservation authorities. Verify the effectiveness and efficiency of the proposed regulatory and eradication interventions to control the population of non-native crayfish species. To improve the quality of the aquatic ecosystem and the conditions for the object of protection by reducing or eliminating the impact of non-native crayfish species by implementing measures at selected sites. Communicate the experience of designing and implementing measures among domestic and foreign project partners, government, professional and general public.

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  • Estonia: Prevention and control of non-indigenous species of crayfish in Estonian freshwaters/Estonian University of Life Sciences

The establishment and increase in abundance, distribution, and persistence of aquatic invasive species (AIS) is a source of concern in Estonia. The spread of AIS can have great ecological impacts on native communities and habitats. Our project “Eradication of aquatic invasive species in Estonian freshwaters” was funded through The European Economic Area (EEA) grants “Climate Change Mitigation and Adaption” call I “Ecosystem resilience increased”. The main goal of this project is to help protect and restore native communities’ resilience to climate change by eradicating and controlling the spread of AIS.

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  • Be plant wise, do not support invasive species/Czech University of Life Sciences Prague

Plant invasions are now considered one of the main threats to biodiversity worldwide. Horticulture, especially botanical and castle gardens, is considered to be the main source of invasive plant species. Native ornamental plants make up a high percentage of the European flora. In the Czech Republic, 54 % of all plant species are of this type. Some of these taxa then spread uncontrollably into the wild and become dangerous and unwelcome aliens. Well-known examples are the hogweed, knotweeds or Himalayan balsam. In addition to the loss of biodiversity, invasive species also cause changes in nutrient and moisture conditions in natural ecosystems. Specially protected areas of nature, e.g. nature reserves or Natura 2000, are at risk. Invasive species also often contain toxic or allergenic substances that affect human health. The aspect of introducing new species into ornamental crops is not yet emphasized in horticultural practice in the Czech Republic – invasive species are still commercially widespread. Therefore, it is advisable to highlight the issue of cultivation and spread of invasive species and influence horticultural practice to favor species that do not exhibit invasive behavior. The project is inspired by campaigns in Australia and New Zealand (Plant/Grow me instead) and the UK (Be plant wise, Plant Alert) which motivate gardeners to change their attitude towards invasive species. Given the different environmental and social conditions in the Czech Republic, the campaign needs to be adapted to local conditions. A local range of species to be grown will be compiled, a list of safe alternatives will be compiled, safe alternatives will be planted, distributed and shown in plantations. The project will also include an educational campaign.

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Regional seed mixtures as an effective tool for protecting the diversity of grassland habitats

 

  • Elimination of invasive species in practice/Czech University of Life Sciences Prague

The influence of invasive alien species on natural ecosystems has been recognised as one of the major threats to biodiversity. Biodiversity decreases due to changes in the structural and functional characteristics of particular ecosystems. These changes are often irreversible, and their influence can be mainly observed in rare and endangered types of habitats protected as nature reserves or localities of European importance. The project objective is the elimination of invasive alien plant species (IAS) spreading by the application of Methodological Approaches of the Ministry of the Environment CZ. The Monitoring of the IAS will be applied where the monitoring and rapid IAS control will protect the site. The Effectiveness of IAS control will be applied at localities of IAS massive presence. Application of the methodologies will be used as illustrative examples of a formalized approach to nature protection.

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  • Regional seed mixtures as an effective tool for protecting the diversity of grassland habitats/Czech Union for Nature Conservation

The project focuses on the restoration of damaged meadows and the establishment of new species-rich lawns using two innovative methods. The support for the use of regional seed mixtures across the Czech Republic will contribute to increase or maintain the diversity of localities of conservation value but also of agricultural and anthropogenic habitats, thus improving the state of the Czech landscape. The development of the Database of donor grassland sites will facilitate the planning of seed harvesting by machines. It will also help the development of the green hay transfer method which has more complex logistics (demanding timing of biomass transfer). Moreover, it will lead to the deeper cooperation between universities in the Czech Republic and abroad (project partners), the non-profit sector, professional companies, farmers and state institutions.

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  • Implementation of floating green islands to improve nesting conditions for waterfowl and strengthen the biodiversity of pond ecosystems/Czech University of Life Sciences Prague

Intensively managed fishponds are considered the most important breeding habitat for waterbirds as nesting sites as well as for rearing of young. In last decades, environmental change (incl. climate change) has deeply impacted waterbirds’ population dynamics. Most key drivers of population change, such as reproduction success, are strongly affected by environmental conditions on the breeding sites. Importantly, the lack of suitable nesting sites leads to competition for this critical resource. In this context, this project aims to increase the ecological value of man-made wetlands (i.e. mainly fishponds and post-mining water reservoirs) by creating new suitable nesting sites and enhancing the ecological conditions of fishponds to meet the breeding requirement of a group of selected waterbird species (ducks, gulls and terns) of interest. The intervention proposed in this project consists in the implementation of floating artificial islands in intensively managed fishponds through Nature-Based Solutions. These islands will directly provide the actual space for waterbirds to breed on but, importantly, will also create and enhance the entire local ecosystem by supporting the macrophyte vegetation and provide suitable habitat for the development of other fresh water organisms.

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  • Slovakia: Wetlands for Life and Prosperity: Restoring a Ramsar Site in the Alluvium of the Morava River/Green Foundation

The consortium team partnered with local landowners who decided to dedicate abandoned meadows and extensively used agricultural land to restore local wetland ecosystems. We want to believe that this positive precedent will support other landowners in the region to restore wetlands or switch to ecological and sustainable agriculture. Our common vision is to create a place suitable for relaxation and education about the importance of local wetlands. A place with rich biodiversity, full of synergies with other projects and activities in the vicinity, with a positive impact on residents and tourists. When planning the educational trail, we also think about people with autism spectrum disorders, for whom the sidewalk will be „friendly“.

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Central bird pond and marginal ponds in Josefov Meadows

 

  • MOSPREMA: Prediction and management of mosquito calamities for biodiversity conservation in floodplain forests/Palacky University Olomouc

The essence of the project is to use modern geo-information methods and current knowledge to create new procedures for integrated management to minimize annually recurring calamitous mosquito populations, with special attention to the conservation of biodiversity in Litovelské Pomoraví Protected Landscape Area (PLA). The project’s objectives are following the State Environmental Policy of the Czech Republic 2030 with a view to 2050, as well as the Strategy for Adaptation to Climate Change in the Czech Republic. An advanced landscape model, which will be created using continuously updated sensor and image data, will concentrate and evaluate knowledge about the landscape, record planned and implemented interventions, and predict the state of the territory in terms of the risk of calamity. With the precautionary principle in mind, the concentration of larvicides will be reduced. The application of larvicides will be more precise, thereby significantly reducing the input of foreign substances into the floodplain forest habitat. The selective application will maintain the necessary presence of mosquitoes in the floodplain forest ecosystem. They are part of the food chain for many important organisms (fish, birds, bats). The decrease of this group can lead to a significant impact on the life cycle of associated predators of other organisms. With developed management, it will be possible to control calamity conditions according to strategic documents. The Norwegian University of Science and Technology partner will help to implement contemporary knowledge about the Citizen Science approach and bring valuable experience in developing a prediction model responding to climate change.

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  • Pilot farm Amalia – application of the Smart Landscape concept/ Czech University of Life Sciences Prague

The project proposal is focused on the implementation of selected innovative measures in the pilot area of the Amálie. The measures implemented by the project are being developed within the Smart Landscape concept developed at the Czech University of Life Sciences Prague. The measures are aimed at supporting existing ecosystems and the development of biodiversity in the cultural landscape, negatively affected not only by agricultural but also by anthropogenic activities in general. In particular, it is a set of measures aimed at minimizing the erosion of agricultural land, water resources management taking into account climate change, support for the representation of trees in agricultural land as landscape elements (promoting non-production functions), concurrent tree cultivation, and agriculture in agroforestry systems (supporting tree production functions), improvement adaptation of the agricultural landscape to climate change, increasing biodiversity in agroecosystems, support for wetland ecosystems and floodplain biodiversity. Special attention is paid to measures on drainage systems to minimize their negative impacts on the deterioration of ecosystems and the loss of biodiversity. The submitted project expands the currently implemented innovative measures in Amalia pilot farm, intending to support their transferability in the conditions of the Czech Republic and more widely within the European landscape.

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  • Kosteliska: bird parks as a tool for biodiversity protection/Czech Society for Ornitology – South Moravian Brench

The goal of the project is to use traditional agricultural methods such as grazing or mowing to start effective care of the area and boost a wide selection of habitats ranging from the pond itself, the pond banks, wet meadows and wetlands to dry sandy low hills. The principal activities of the project will be the suppression of invasive plant species and setting up cattle grazing. In some places, slight landscape adjustments will take place to achieve flooding of some areas or to enhance biodiversity and support elimination of invasive species.  Although birds are considered to be the priority species of the project, it aims to influence the area so that there are the most favourable conditions for a broad spectrum of plants and animals. Further activities will focus on finding environmentally friendly ways of opening the bird park for visitors (both the residents and nature-loving tourists). The anticipated outcome of the project is a significant improvement to the state of the area including suppression of invasive and expansive species, expansion of naturally valuable habitats, setting up suitable care of the territory and raising greater awareness of the protected area.

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Kosteliska: bird parks as a tool for biodiversity protection