About the project

The project BioDivKultur is funded as part of the FEdA "BMBF Research Initiative for the Conservation of Biodiversity" on the topic of valuing and safeguarding biodiversity in politics, business and society.

Species-rich grassland areas (meadows and pastures) are known to provide a habitat for many insects. However, there are also habitats in parks, on green strips (field margins, roadsides) and commercial green spaces that are similar to grassland and can provide suitable habitats for a large number of insect species.
However, mowing grassland can severely alter insect habitats. During mowing, numerous animals can be killed by the machines and their nests destroyed, and food resources and refuge areas can disappear abruptly.

Why is mowing still carried out?
Gardens and parks are mowed for aesthetic and recreational purposes, among other things. When a meadow is used for agricultural purposes, the focus is on yield, for example to produce hay for animal feed. Nature conservation also has an interest in keeping meadows open, as it is only through regular mowing or grazing that the areas can be maintained in the long term and not become overgrown.

The project BioDivKultur, in which biologists work together with humanities scholars and social scientists with practice partners, is dedicated to values, usage interests, options for action and regulatory possibilities in the design and maintenance of green spaces. The aim is to investigate how biodiversity as a value and usage interest can have a stronger communicative, political and practical impact on the design of green spaces.

The aim of the biological studies was to record the insect fauna on green spaces of different sizes, isolation, management and design and, in addition, to investigate the mortality of insects for different mowing devices and mowing processes, as well as the influence of refugia on insect populations. The insects were sampled by vacuuming an area of one square meter.

MOur results can be used to comprehensively determine the effectiveness of different protective measures during mowing. The insect pocket calculator was developed based on the data obtained so that these can also be used by stakeholders in practice.

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