Wo ist die Grenze? - Kde je hranice?

Duration: 01/04/2022 – 31/12/2022

Funding: Interreg AT-CZ

The two national park administrations of Thayatal and Podyjí have been protecting the shared cross-border natural heritage directly on the border between Austria and the Czech Republic for over 20 years. The wide range of tasks of a national park requires the two administrations to preserve and promote the habitat and unique biodiversity on the one hand, and to make this habitat accessible to visitors to an appropriate extent on the other. The two smallest national parks in both countries have seen a steady increase in visitor numbers and growing interest in nature experiences in recent years. This project deals with the challenge of how these visitor flows can be channeled to continue ensuring to ensure efficient nature conservation in line with the core mission of the national parks.

The aim is to enable visitors from both countries to experience nature intensively in the two national parks and thus raise awareness of the importance of protecting this special natural area. This involves personal encounters between visitors from both countries, shared nature experiences, communication and exchange. In order to realize this objective even better, it is foreseen that existing visitor infrastructure and visitor management of the two national parks will be expanded and upgraded. At the same time, scientific basis for decision-making will be established in order to evaluate how the demands of the constantly growing number of visitors can be met in the future in a way that is compatible with the natural environment and what influence the disturbance caused by visitors has on the natural environment and its functions in a regional and supra-regional context. As a result, a standardized visitor management system can be implemented in both national park administrations, which is tailor-made for the cross-border public and the natural area itself.

As this is a cross-border nature reserve and biodiversity and exchange doesn’t stop at administrational borders, also the surrounding areas of the protected sites are considered. Using existing mapping data and newly generated geodata using Sentinel-2 imagery, valuable habitats in the agricultural landscape are located as well. The project aims to address those important connections of ecological corridors connecting the national parks to the transnational network of natural migration routes.

Contact: Stefan Fuchs