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Land-use intensity

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Farmers, foresters, investors and voters shape the landscape with their behaviour and activities. It is therefore worth taking a closer look at exactly what these stakeholders do and what concrete effects they have on the landscape and ecosystems.

Meadows can be nutrient-rich or dry, multicoloured or uniformly green. In addition to site conditions, this is mostly the result of agricultural practice. How often a grassland is mown, how heavily it is fertilised, which animals graze on it and for how long - all these factors ultimately determine the type of meadow. Similarly, the same applies to forests, orchards, but also to the vegetation in settlement areas: the gardener chooses flowers or vegetables, she can plant either exotic cherry laurel or local privet. The type and intensity of land use thus determines the ecological as well as the aesthetic quality of a specific location.

In a variety of projects we are investigating, how the intensity of land use can be determined, which factors shape it and what consequences this has for landscapes and habitats.