Piana FI-PO-PT-PI lakes

October 21, 2017
October 21, 2017 FACE

Establishment and creation by private hunters of permanent lakes with small depth, by artificial and controlled flooding.

These lakes, as private property, are used during game season to hunt ducks, coots and other game birds; in spring and summer hunters put big efforts to grant minimum depth levels and reliable vegetations conditions to support avifauna during pre-nuptial migration and breeding.

The aim is to restore and maintain the wetland; this alluvial plain, comprised among the Province (countries) of Firenze, Prato and Pistoia, was in the past a big internal wetland area, especially during autumn, winter and spring. Now it is the most industrialised and urbanised area of whole Tuscany.

Following actions are regularly conducted: planting of hedges composed of indigenous shrub species, planting of game crops (corn and sorghum) throughout the wetland according to the principles of organic farming. These lakes are today over 40, with variable extension (from 1 to 15ha), so a consistent land surface is yearly subtracted to intensive farming and allocated to a very important biodiversity creation and maintenance activity.

Actions are normally conducted in late summer period by reduced use of mechanical means and consistent use of handwork, in order to grant maximum respect and reduce any bother. The valuable activity of recreating wetland zones, only conducted by hunters with their own resources, showed important result; all avifauna presence index, yearly checked during IWC and other census activity, are regularly growing in spite of urbanisation and habitat loss.

Without hunters big efforts, this big alluvial plain would show a regularly decreasing trend in terms of biodiversity and habitat.

Country: Italy
Starting date:
Species characteristics: Huntable species, Migratory species
Type of actions: Management of habitats and wildlife
Leading partners: Creation and maintenance of lakes are initiatives of groups of hunters not related to particular organization. Collection of data is done by FIDC at national level and local level (fidc.prato@fidc.it).

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