Benefit of the month #3: 
Green Infrastructure and habitat management

Each month MaGICLandscapes introduces a particular benefit of green infrastructure including examples from the project’s case study areas and across Central Europe.

Providing habitats for the black grouse in the Krkonoše Mountains and raising public awareness

The green infrastructure of the Krkonoše Mountains National Park (KRNAP) and its surroundings provides many landscape services. One of which is to provide habitat for the black grouse (Tetrao tetrix). During the 20th century the area’s forest was damaged by airborne pollution. This actually benefited the black grouse as it created more suitable habitat such as open scrub-land/grassland. However, the much welcome reduction in pollution has meant the forest is growing again, reducing the grouse’s preferred habitats. This, alongside disturbance from increased tourism, has meant a decrease in grouse numbers over the last 25 years.

To address this KRNAP has restored 11 sites covering 40 ha in the park’s core area. Felling trees and creating/ restoring a shrub-land mix, grassland, wetland and sparse forest at the treeline. The project is funded by the Czech Operational Programme Environment (Operační program Životní prostředí). Signage and interpretation has been provided to inform visitors of their potential impact on the grouse and how to minimise disturbance, especially during breeding time in spring. Habitat management and environmental education activities are key objectives of KRNAP.

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