FRISK-GO workshop: Wildlife
On 8-9 July around 15 experts from five countries were hosted by the French research organisation Irstea located in Nogent-sur-Vernisson, France. The group consisted of hunters, foresters and wildlife biologists.
Several case studies of the situation and development of ungulate populations and their management in different countries (France, Germany, Ireland, Canada, Sweden and Italy) were presented and the different approaches were discussed.
During a field trip the difference between private forest land (main target often: game) and state forest estates were shown and discussed. Especially the tradition in the region of fencing large private forested areas (sometimes with 3 fences one behind the other) gave a quite different picture to forest landscapes that participants know from their countries.
The topic of ungulates differs from other disturbances such as pests and diseases, storm or fire in many aspects. At the same time the similarities to the development of for example the forest fires were obvious.
Compared to the other disturbances the participants agreed that ungulates can not only be seen as a negative, disastrous element for forest landscapes, but that they can have several values e.g. economic value (game and game tourism) and a ecological value as they are not only destroying biodiversity but can also increase biodiversity and form a landscape.
The last session of the workshop was focusing on the added value of a European Forest Risk Facility to wildlife management and the project team was collecting opinions and ideas of how the liaison function (contact between Forest Risk Facility secretariat and national/regional networks) could be shaped and which tasks it should have.
The comments and ideas of this workshop were synchronized with the findings from the other workshops. In a further step a detailed analysis, categorisation and prioritization will be done and fed in to the business plan.
The wildlife workshop with its informative field trip and its highly motivated participants was one successful step towards a future European Forest Risk Facility. The meeting also showed that the mitigating neutral role of a facility or platform can indeed work, even in a topic so emotional as wild ungulates in forests.
More information: FRISK-GO website
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