The Reifenberger Wiesen (meadows) - a paradise for butterflies
The today recognized project Reifenberger Wiesen is a meager meadow in the Taunus near the city of Frankfurt with a particularly high biodiversity - especially on butterflies: 22 different species were counted in one day and 36 fly there in the summer. The rare Purplegold firefly (Lycaena hippothoe) finds here one of its last habitats in Hessen, and it grows the true arnica, whose existence is highly endangered throughout Germany. "We are very pleased to receive this award. It encourages us to continue working for biodiversity, "says Katja Wiese from Naturefund.
In the summer of 2015, the organization from Wiesbaden launched a land acquisition project: Naturefund intends to buy and permanently protect 20,000 m2 of land, almost half of the entire Reifenberger Wiesen area. Naturefund is supported by the Hessian Society for Ornithology and Conservation e.V., the butterfly association Apollo e.V. and the Upper Conservation Authority.
Protection concept was missing so far
At present the meadows with a total area of 55.000 m2 belong to 27 different owners. A uniform protection concept was not possible as a result: Often, mowing was done too early in recent years, destroying butterflies' feed and egg-laying plants. In some years, an entire butterfly population was destroyed because already laid eggs and hatched young caterpillars were killed.
Objective: Buy and protect 20,000 m² of land
"In the meantime we have bought just under 2,500 m2, for a further 2,750 m2 the purchase contract is already with the notary. For six parcels with a total size of 18,000 m2, we are already negotiating with the owners", says Katja Wiese about the progress. The Reifenberger meadows are now mowed in consultation with the conservation authority only in late summer, so that the great biodiversity, especially on diurnal butterflies, is preserved.
In addition to a certificate and an award badge, the project partners receive a "diversity tree" symbolizing the colorful diversity and unique beauty of nature. The award is part of the UN Decade of Biodiversity activities, which was proclaimed by the United Nations for the period 2011-2020.
Naturefund e. V. and the Apollo e. V. on Sunday, 2 July 2017, a two-hour butterfly walk through the Reifenberger meadows. The hike starts at 11:00 am and the meeting point is the parking lot in front of the Hotel-Restaurant Weilquelle in Schmitten-Oberreifenberg.
More information about the project
To the press photos