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Grazing Study Tour: Experiences in Poland

27. September 2023 - 29. September 2023


Dear friends and colleagues,

After the successful first edition of the Eurosite Grazing Study Tour in the Netherlands, we are pleased to invite you to the second edition of this project, this time in western Poland, characterised by diverse habitat conditions.

After the period of political transformation in Poland (around the 90ies), many agricultural areas located in valuable natural areas were abandoned and progressively degraded, resulting in the need to take action to restore the value of such places. Grazing has become essential for active nature conservation in some protected areas.

Like the previous edition, the tour is dedicated to nature managers and everyone else interested in the role of large herbivores shaping the natural landscape to create diverse habitats of high value.

In some protected areas, grazing has probably become the most important tool for active nature conservation, ensuring the optimization of habitats for both animate and in many cases inanimate nature.

We plan to learn about the effects of grazing in three areas: “Ujście Warty”(Warta Mouth) National Park, Wolin National Park and Odra Delta Nature Park.

Formed in 2001 Warta Mouth National Park (8074 ha.) lies near the Polish-German border. Flat, wide terrains of the park are situated within the lower bench of Warta River. The floodland is a semi-natural area in which annual water level fluctuations may reach up to 4 meters in the spring months. Nowadays, the park’s landscape is a mosaic of meadows, pastures and areas overgrown by sedge and reeds. The existing plant communities are typical for agriculturally developed valleys of big lowland rivers. The record of bird species of Warta Mouth National Park includes over 270 species along with 170 breeding ones.

Here, grazing is carried out in cooperation with individual farmers with large numbers of cattle and horses. Therefore, the economic aspects are not without significance.

The Wolin National Park, (10.937 ha) which is over 60 years old, includes fragments of the most valuable Baltic cliff coast, forest areas, but also back-delta islands of the Świna River, unique in Europe. So far, over 220 species of birds have been found within the boundaries of the park, including about 140 breeding species On the back-delta islands cattle grazing is carried out in a unique way, with cattle from individual farmers, contributing to the preservation of their valuable habitat for many species of birds.

The area of Odra Delta Nature Park (nearly 1000 ha) is an area belonging to the Society For The Coast since 1996. Scottish Highland cows and Polish horses graze here. With the help of large herbivores, it was possible to recreate the mosaic character of meadows and pastures, characteristic of this area before the introduction of wasteful agriculture in the period 1945 – 1987.

Preliminary Program

26 September
* Arrival of participants Kostrzyn, Słońsk. Recommended hotels will be sent after registration is completed.

27 September
* An outline of nature conservation management in Poland and the start of the Grazing Study Tour in Poland
* Presentation of the problems and effects of grazing in the National Park “Ujście Warty” (Mouth of Warta) with its economic aspects (Education Centre)
* Field session on grazing in the “Ujście Warty” National Park
* Transfer to the Odra Delta Nature Park
* Familiarization with the effects of grazing in Odra Delta Nature Parki in terms of recreating a semi-natural landscape
* Transfer to the Wolin National Park

28 September
* Meeting and presentation of the problems and effects of grazing in Wolin National Park (WNP Museum in Międzyzdroje)
* Transfer + boat trip to the islands of the Back Delta Islands of Świna River
* The effects of grazing in the Wolin National Park (meeting with Farmers)
* The effect of goat grazing on xerothermic grasslands

29 September
* Thematic workshops related to the problem of grazing in nature valuable areas
* Summary and  initial conclusions  of the Grazing Study Tour in The Netherlands and Poland
* Travel back to Słońsk via Szczecin.





Prior to booking please read the registration terms and conditions here.

All costs, including lunches, dinners and bus travel, are covered by the organisers. Participants must cover their own travel costs to Poland and hotel stays. The organisers will advise you on your accommodation once you have registered.  Detailed participant info will follow shortly upon registration. 

Please do not book your train or flight trips before you have received final confirmation of the tour organisation. 





27. September 2023
29. September 2023
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