As the new grazing season is about to start for many farmers, the LIFEstockProtect team is also preparing for eventful spring and summer months. But before we can start full on into visiting farms to establish them as competence centres or plan the livestock protection training courses, we had to finalise a couple of preparatory actions. Also, the theoretical part of the scat dog trainings started online.
Please also read: Livestock Protection Competence Centres Starting Soon
From stakeholders to scat dogs
In March, we reached two important milestones: the team responsible for developing the stakeholder matrix finalised the data collection and the theoretical sessions of the scat dog trainings started. In total, we identified more than 380 stakeholders from 32 interest groups. This database will support the targeted communication and involvement of all relevant stakeholders into the project. Regarding the scat dog trainings, 3 theoretical training sessions about the orientation in the field, principles of training and the elements of search were held. About 60 people participated in the trainings, partially as part of the LIFEstockProtect project. These sessions will form the basis for the practical courses that will take place as soon as Covid19 regulations allow it.
Volunteers supporting shepherds and farmers in 2022
As part of the project, we will establish a Volunteer Workforce Network. In order to do so, we first had to decide about the structure of such a network, its reach and logistics. Therefore, we had two fruitful internal meetings in March with the outcome of an action plan on how to proceed. Essentially, we will divide the network in two distinct groups: short-term help (1-2 days) for famers in need on a case-by-case basis and long-term support (2 weeks – 3 months) for shepherds to build fences, herd animals and check on them during the day and night, if necessary. For the long-term support network we can build on the knowledge of the very well functioning Pasturs project, coordinated by the LIFEstockProtect beneficiary ELIANTE.
The Volunteer Network Force will start in 2022, focusing of course on the project region in Bavaria, Austria and South Tyrol. However, we will also use this year to start a couple of pilot volunteer activities to test the planned initiative. The first pilot activity of such kind took place in September 2020 in Tyrol, where four motivated volunteers supported a shepherd for 3 weeks. One of the pictures taken in September will be displayed on the Heldenplatz in Vienna as part of an exhibition to showcase volunteer efforts in Austria. So watch out for it!
Livestock Protection Competence Centres to meet virtually soon
Another milestone that was reached this month was the finalisation of the concept and the financing of the Livestock Protection Competence Centres. As many farms have already reached out to us, we are now in the process of organising a virtual informational event to get to know the interested parties. There, we will present the project, the chances and requirements of a Competence Centre and answer all pending questions. Of course, we will share the outcomes of the meeting afterwards.
LIFEstockProtect in the News March 2021
Sendereihe “Spürnasen für die Umwelt” auf Ö1: Der Biologe Leopold Slotta-Bachmayr spricht über die Arbeit mit Naturschutzhunden
TV Bayern LIVE Interview mit Uwe Friedel von Bund Naturschutz Bayern