Introduction to the project

In the Nördlinger Ries and along the Wörnitz Valley, at the intersection between the
Franconian and Swabian Alb, high quality nature conservation habitats come together - barren
limestone grasslands, fields with limestone fragments, marshlands and fens, sparse sand
grasslands, river meadows, beech and oak & hornbeam forests.  Due to its situation, the
project region is a "bottleneck" in the national and international biotope network for dry
locations, and is of outstanding importance from a European perspective. Furthermore, the
dispersal paths and ranges of numerous species of plants and animals also overlap within the
project area, which is why both western Mediterranean, as well as eastern continental and
alpine species are found here. This makes the region a "hotspot" for biodiversity in Bavaria,
Germany and Europe, and is the reason why it also belongs to the Europe-wide nature
protection network Natura 2000.
For a long time, a number of players have been applying themselves to the preservation of this
unique landscape and the plant and animal world that inhabits it. They have now combined all
their efforts within the framework of the Life+ Nature Project and formed the "Heide-Allianz"
partnership, and they are implementing a wide range of measures with the financial support
of the European Union and the Bavarian nature conservation funds.

What do "Natura 2000" and "Life+ Nature" mean?

Natura 2000 is a Europe-wide network of conservation areas, which serves to protect selected
plant and animal species, as well as types of habitat. In FFH areas, the focus lies on the
species and habitat types cited in the Flora-Fauna-Habitat directive (= FFH directive), whilst
certain species of birds are protected in EU bird protection areas. In some locations – as in the
project region – the two types of conservation area can overlap.
With the subsidy programme LIFE+ Nature, the EU supports exemplary projects
for the protection and development of these areas.

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Project key data


Duration: 5 years (01.08.2013 to 30.09.2018 )
Partners: Heide-Allianz (administrative district of Donau-Ries, Rieser Naturschutzverein e. V., Schutzgemeinschaft Wemdinger Ried e. V., BUND Naturschutz in Bayern e.V.), Bavarian State Ministry for Environment and Consumer Protection
Project region: 3,554 hectares
Total budget: EUR 2.5 million