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Review of measures to promote biodiversity as part of the Schneewinkel project

Project description and goals: In the “Schneewinkel”, an apple growing zone in Schlanders/Silandro, specific measures will be taken to promote biodiversity. To check the effectiveness of these measures, we survey the occurrence of birds, bats, butterflies and flying insects in this area. For this purpose, we investigate a total of eight points (four of them in the Schneewinkel core area and four outside the area) to understand whether the applied measures work.

Methods: The survey methods vary depending on the group to be examined. The bird survey began in late April and continued until around the beginning of June. We identified the birds primarily based on their singing: in the early morning hours, we survey the birds within a radius of 100 m for 10 minutes. We carried out three repetitions for each examination point.

To identify the bats, we mounted ultrasound recorders, so-called “batloggers”. These devices record the sounds of the bats that we use to classify species.

We study the butterflies on a total of three survey dates. The surveys take place between May and September only when weather conditions are suitable. We slowly walk a transect (a marked straight line) of 50 m and catch the butterflies nearby. These are then identified and released afterwards.

In addition to butterflies, we are also investigating the occurrence of other flying insects (especially bees, wasps and Diptera). To do so, we set traps for 24 hours on two dates. Bright yellow bowls filled with water serve as traps, which attract the insects in their search of flowers. We then identify the collected insects in the laboratory.

Partners: The project is carried out in collaboration with the Association of Val Venosta producers of fruit and vegetables, VI.P.

Contact: For further information, please contact Andreas Hilpold, andreas.hilpold@eurac.edu

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