In September 2023, colleagues from the Welsh project LIFE Quaking Bogs came to see us in Šumava as part of the study trip that the LIFE program offers to all revitalization teams. It is a great opportunity for meeting people who solve similar work challenges and can thus share valuable experiences with each other, or bring up new procedures and solutions that have proven themselves in the practical conditions of their projects.
During their three-day stay, we have shown to our colleagues not only the Czech sites, but also the sites of our German project partner from the organization BUND Naturschutz, who apply grazing as a management measure to improve the current state of bog forests and degraded raised bogs in the vicinity of the Wagenwasser stream. With regard to the fact that traditional grazing (especially of sheep) is widespread in the Welsh environment, the Welsh group observed with interest not only a concrete demonstration of planning and management of grazing as such, but also appreciated the information about the overall change in the approach to work in agriculture, as more and more small farmers in Bavaria are abandoning the intensive use of land and resorting rather to traditional farming methods. Large-scale farming, often at the expense of valuable wetland habitats, is one of the major problems in Wales (and the British Isles in general) and rectifying this situation is, among other things, one of the tasks of the Welsh project.
On the Czech side, as part of the excursions, we have visited the restored industrially-mined peatland (Vlčí Jamy), a restored meadow spring (Malý Bor) and the revitalized bed of the Hučina stream. Considering that even in Wales they are faced with the effects of long-term mining, alb eit not of peat, but of oil on the surrounding wetland environment and they are not completely unfamiliar with the revitalization of water courses, all the places they visited were a real inspiration for their further work in the LIFE Quaking Bogs project, which will last until December 2026.