Little mouse, big tasks
23. 11. 2020
The gallery of restored streams in Šumava Mts.
1. 2. 2021

Looking back to 2020 – a basic overview

The year 2020 was non-standard in many aspects. Fortunately, the implementation of restoration measures in the field was only little affected by the covid situation and a lot of work could therefore be done. Over the next few weeks, we will gradually introduce you to the individual project sites on which we worked last year and returned the water regime to normal, close to nature state. So follow us and you will have a unique opportunity to see how dried and disturbed wetlands became gradually more wet and revived.

14 project sites
243 ha of restored wetlands
37 km of drainage ditches
4.5 km of restored streams

First of all, let’s allow a small overview of last year in numbers:
For 2020, we procured six restoration companies for hydrological works at 15 project sites. In the end, however, only 14 sites were worked on, because the two-year implementation of Nová Hůrka was postponed to 2021 as a result of a mutual agreement with the contractor. Last year, a total of 243 hectares of wetlands were restored and rewetted. So we have completed 12 % of the area that we intend to restore within the LIFE for MIRES project. You can see which wetlands these are from the attached map.

Mountain stream before (August) and after restoration (December) at Nové Údolí project site

Field works gradually began in mid-July and were completed in December. During the spring and early summer, we do not apply restoration measures so as not to disturb nesting birds or other animals that take care of their young. In winter, conditions are not suitable, as snow cover and frozen soil make work with soil more difficult, affect their accuracy and often limit access to sites. Moreover, many animals, including rare species, need peace to successfully survive this unfavorable season.

In all 14 project sites, we blocked a total of 37 km of drainage ditches in 2020, which approximately equals the route from Prague to Mělník. More than 1,900 pcs of wooden dams were installed into ditches and  together with infilling with soil, ensured their dysfunctioning. Blocked ditches no longer drain water which can be much more retained in the landscape. Furthermore, 4.5 km of small streams were restored by returning from the deep channels to original shallow courses. Alltogether, we improved water conditions on 10 ha of valuable raised bogs, 11 ha of treeless fens, 35 ha of bog woodlands and 45 ha of waterlogged spruce forests. In addition, we have also mowed 13 hectares of fens and wet meadows as an improvement of habitat and a potential mating area for black grouse. This measure showed positive impact already in springtime 2020 when two males and one female black grouse were observed mating at meadows mown in 2019.

So much for a brief summary…

A continuous presentation of individual project sites with lots of photos and descriptions will follow in the upcoming months. So do not forget to come back to us!

Blocked drainage ditches and restored streams at project site Pod Skelnou (October 2020)