HNV Farming & Biodiversity

Bucegi (Romania)

Natura site name: Bucegi
Natura Code: RO-SCI-0013

Mountain region with small-scale semi-substistence farming. Imortant aspects are the high level of biodiversity resulting from the high number of individual meadow parcels all managed in a subtly different way and with low-intensity. Also, the land-use system incorporates short-distance transhumance (or pendulation) during the summer months to mountain pastures.

Text: S. Huband & B. Hill
© Photos: S. Huband

Back to High Nature Value Farming and Biodiversity

Smallholdings

Smallholdings

Typical smallholdings manage about 2-3ha of land divided into 3-4 parcels. Land-use is on a semi-subsistence basis. Most owners consume more than 50% of their produce.

Steep slopes

Steep slopes

The steep slopes are mown by hand starting in July. Low-lying meadows may be cut for a second time as late as September.

Habitat mosaic

Habitat mosaic

Management of the meadows varies in a subtle different way, e.g. in the level of dunging, the date of mowing or the timing of spring/autumn grazing. This results in a habitat mosaic rich in biodiversity.

Communal summer grazing

Communal summer grazing

Communal summer grazing (sheep and cattle) on the upland pastures is an essential part of the land-use system. But finding suitable shepherds is getting increasingly difficult.

Hay is stored in the barns

Barn

Hay is stored in the barns on each meadow. In winter, cattle is moved from barn to barn. Dung is collected in the barns and used to fertilise the adjacent meadows in spring.

Mountain hay meadows

Mountain hay meadows (6520): With over 45 butterfly species recorded in the area of a single village, these meadows are exceptionally diverse.

Species-rich Nardus grasslands

Species-rich Nardus grasslands

Species-rich Nardus grasslands, on silicious substrates in mountain areas (*6230): This priority habitat is typical for the summer pastures in the mountains.

Small rocky outcrops and scree

Small rocky outcrops and scree

Small rocky outcrops and scree are scattered in the landscape. These generally unmanaged grasslands can belong to important habitat types: *6110 - rupicolous calcareous grasslands of the Alysso-Sedion albi and 8210 - calcareous rocky slopes with chasmophytic vegetation. They provide stable breeding sites and nectar ressources for insects after the meadows have been cut in late summer.

Springs

Cotton grass

The valley slopes are rich in springs. In these places, the rare small-sedge community of the Caricion davallianae (habitat type 7230 - Alkaline fens, shown here Cotton grass) can only occur if mown regularly. Otherwise they will quickly overgrow with willows (Salix sp.)

Arnica (Arnica montana)

Arnica montana

Arnica (Arnica montana) is an endangered plant species characteristic of mountain hay meadows in the Carpathians

Large blue (Maculinea arion)

Large blue (Maculinea arion)

Large blue (Maculinea arion) with its very complex life-cycle and habitat requirements is endangered on a European scale. It still occurs regularly in the vicinity of Moeciu de Sus. Photo: Wickipedia, PJC&Co

Sand lizard (Lacerta agilis)

Lacerta agilis

Sand lizards (Lacerta agilis) occur in the meadows as does the rarely seen common adder (Vipera berus).

Small blue (Cupido minimus)

Small blue

The small blue (Cupido minimus) only lays its eggs on kidney vetch (Anthyllis vulneraria) which flowers mainly in June .


European Forum on Nature Conservation and Pastoralism
Online: http://www.hnv-farming.eu/panorama/bucegi/
Date: 2017/06/25
© 2017 EFNCP – All rights reserved.