“The role of the shepherd. Tradition and technology for the conservation of mountain pastures” – 25-27.11.2018 (Vittoria Gasteiz – Basque country / Spain)

RoMontana Association was represented by it’s President  (Adrian-Radu Rey) at the Life OREKA MENDIAN Seminar “The role of the shepherd. Tradition and technology for the conservation of mountain pastures” that was organized in Vittoria-Gasteiz,  Basque country (Spain) between 25 and 27 November 2018. Over 100 specialists from across  Europe discussed on the main subject of the Project and Seminar.

The objective of the LIFE OREKA MENDIAN project, “Conservation and management of mountain pastures in the Basque Country”, is to conserve the grazing habitats of community interest in Protected Natural Spaces by means of maintaining traditional livestock usage, given that the progressive abandon of grazing systems is considered to be the main reason why these pastures are among the European habitats under greatest threat.
This affirmation raises a large number of questions: What is really happening in mountain livestock farms? What are
the causes and the tendencies of change? What challenges are faced by mountain spaces and the farmers and shepherds who manage them? What strategies are developed by the farms which remain in place today to tackle the socioeconomic and environmental changes? What are the consequences of the changes in grazing habits on the state of conservation of pastures and of our mountains?
In this Intermediate Seminar of the LIFE OREKA MENDIAN project, an endeavour was made to answer these questions and to place emphasis ons new technologies as monitoring tools to support the planning of actions to conserve and manage our mountain pastures. This project assembles the administrators of Protected Natural Spaces and mountains, owners, farmers and scientists with a view to achieving the permanence of genuine mountain landscapes, valuable habitats and a traditional way of life.

All the presentations made during the event can be accessed here: http://www.lifeorekamendian.eu/en/seminario-intermedio-del-proyecto-2-2-2-2/

To complete the seminar, on the 27th participants made a field trip to the Aizkorri-Aratz Natural Park where they had the opportunity to observe the alpine pastures management measures applied in a Natura 2000 Natural Protected Area and the way that traditional pastoral activities and cheese production from sheep milk Mendiko Gazta (PDO – Protected Designation of Origin) – are organized.

More details about the project here: http://www.lifeorekamendian.eu/en/