New cross-border project supports Ecological Network at local level

Nov 18, 2010
Within the scope of the interregional Italian/Swiss programme, the "DIVERSICOLTURA - Biodiversity in the Cultural Landscape" project was recently approved. The project encompasses the Swiss Münstertal and the neighbouring Italian Obervinschgau. This area is part of the Econnect pilot region Rhaetian Triangle.

As part of the project, measures are being implemented to preserve traditional cultural landscapes as living spaces for endangered species of fauna and flora. A joint strategy is being developed for the promotion of biodiversity and for cross-border living space connectivity. There are also plans to upgrade cross-border rivers as corridors for animals and plants and set up educational trails. DIVERSICOLTURA is therefore consolidating and supporting the efforts of Econnect, the Platform Ecological Network and the Ecological Continuum Initiative for pan-Alpine ecological networks at local level.
The Rock Butterfly (Chazara briseis L.) is threatened by extinction. It can only be found in the Swiss Münstertal because of the large expanse of species-rich dry grasslands in the neighbouring Italian municipalities of Taufers and Mals. To further the Rock Butterfly, grazing land will be cleared in Münstertal and grazing plans optimised within the framework of DIVERSICOLTURA. Besides the Rock Butterfly, a large number of other animals and plants will profit from this. The forestry group and the affected farmers will also benefit in terms of work and ecological direct payments. DIVERSICOLTURA is ensuring that the Rock Butterfly's habitat in the Italian Vinschgau remains in good condition so that these measures make sense in the long term.