Community farm in feulersdorf becomes an oasis of biodiversity

Lizards, partridge hedges and amphibian ponds – on a total of eight hectares of flat land, nature garden planners and book authors reinhard witt and katrin kaltofen, together with their interns, are creating all kinds of new habitats, depending on the location.

Witt has developed drought-resistant plants such as the elsbeere especially for the "steppe climate" with its low rainfall selected on the french jura. Species such as cuckoo campion, keyflower and snake’s knotweed were chosen for the partly damp overflow basins.

Seeds and seedlings come from organic cultivation

Wild rose bushes next to newly planted ponds should provide shade for amphibians and frogs. Seeds and seedlings are all organically grown or from the region. Half of the flat is located in the immediate vicinity of the company or on the company’s premises. In the areas around the waxhouses, naturalists have planted annual and perennial plants such as corn cockle and knapweed. The tall vegetation provides a hiding place and habitat for all kinds of insects. Partridges and songbirds like field lark or yellowhammer benefit from it.

In the break area for employees, nutrient-poor sand and gravel beds were created. The natural garden planner sate on it native wild plants such as pigeon cabbage, lowenmaul or bellflower. Nectar and pollen are said to attract butterflies and wild bees, including those that specialize in certain plant species. For example, the bed with nattern head is intended for the nattern head mason bee.

Gnarled root plates protrude from the currently still sparse sand hills. They come from the fruit trees that were felled during the construction phase. They are now living a second life as oat domicile. Witt explains: "the larvae of various kafer species bore holes in the dead wood, and wild bees nest in these holes."

Boulders and deadwood

Dead wood is not the only material recycled as biotope equipment. Numerous rock blocks, which were blasted out of deeper layers of earth during the construction of the wax house, are now laid out in sections on the south slope. They serve as a sunbed for reptiles. Should it get too hot for the animals, shady bushes above the rocky slope will cool them down.

The well thought-out nature conservation measures in feulersdorf cost a total of around 150000 euros. "We are a model company. That is why we want to present ourselves as exemplary", said fritz boss, one of the two managers of scherzer& boss. According to the federal nature conservation act, he is obliged to compensate for the construction of the waxhouses under nature conservation law. A planning office calculates which measures are to be carried out on which surface. Tumpels for amphibians or newly planted trees pay more in the point system than the former farmland on which the gemusbaubetrieb stands.

Beyond the company’s land, compensatory removals are also taking place on another four hectares in the surrounding area. This includes the uncovering of rock heads, the rough planting of wildflower meadows and the planting of special plant vegetation on forest edges for nocturnal butterflies, which are a delicacy for bats.

Crossing hiking trails

"The topic of biodiversity is currently on everyone’s lips. We are pleased that so much is being done in the market town of wonsees", emphasizes mayor andreas pohner. Only recently, the wonsees kindergarten received an award from the united nations for its wild bee wall, the church st. Laurentius cooperates with the franken association for the protection of species for a jackdaw project, and a hiker’s shepherd preserves the sparse juniper hillsides on the jura. In addition, the market is currently planning to make public green spaces in the municipal area bee-friendly, according to pohner.

In the coming years, the newly created flower biotopes around the company scherzer& bosses unfold their full splendor. Then also the public can enjoy it. Through the balancing areas travelled trails of the counties of kulmbach and lichtenfels. Hiking maps are available in the tourist information offices of the region as well as in the municipality of wonsees, in restaurants, in the town hall foyer or at zwernitz castle in sanspareil.


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