Nature has its place – for your enjoyment!
From Pernegg im Murtal to Koglhof im Feistritztal, from Schöckl to Rennfeld across eight municipalities, the landscape of the Naturpark Almenland is extensive and varied. From the craggy cliffs in the Bärnschützklammand on the Hochlantsch, to the gentle meadow orchards around Fladnitz and Passail to the south. Naturally the alps are the nature preserve’s heart.
125 contiguous alpine pastures, from the Tyrnauer Alm to the Teichalm and Sommeralm to the Brandlucken – a European record! Nearly 3000 four-legged caretakers keep the alpine paradise in shape from June to September. Cows, calves, oxen and horses of farmers throughout the alpine region spend the fresh summer days here, performing an invaluable service for the nature preserve.
The flora and fauna are just as diverse as the landscape. Only patient observers will spot the sedate mountain cock, the lively hazel hen or nimble weasel, while impressive ibexes are frequently encountered directly next to the hiking trails.
The unique variety of orchids in the alpine region is also surprising. Carnivorous plants pose a threat only to tiny insects in the Teichalm moor when the sundew seductively opens its petals.
Our various offerings in the form of nature preserve adventure programmes let you explore and learn about the landscape, animals, meadows and forests.
What is a nature preserve?
A nature preserve is a conservation area that has emerged from the interactions of humans and nature. Often the landscape has acquired its current face over the course of centuries, and is maintained by the people who live and work here through gentle forms of land use and landscape conservation.
Protecting the landscape in conjunction with its use is a nature preserve’s legal mandate. Especially valuable, distinctive landscapes are protected from destruction and further developed. The respective state government designates a rural region as a nature preserve, imposing the following tasks on the area:
Protection and further development
The diversity and beauty of nature and the cultivated landscape that has emerged over the centuries must be preserved.
These goals are accomplished for example through natural history information, the management of protected areas and research projects.
Attractive, well maintained recreational facilities corresponding to the protected area and nature of the landscape have to be offered.
Examples include hiking trails, biking and riding trails, rest and picnic areas, and adventure playgrounds.
Nature, the culture and their interrelationships have to be made tangible through special offerings and interactive forms of understanding and experiencing.
Examples include nature trails, adventure tours, seminars, and fostering customs and traditions.
Regional development has to be promoted through the nature preserve, adding value and maintaining the quality of life.
This is accomplished for example through collaboration, employment, nature preserve products, and inns and restaurants in the nature preserve.
The Nature Park Almenland
The Almenland is the newest of Styria’s seven nature preserves. A decision to designate the region due to the special cultivated landscape form of the managed alps was made by the Styrian state government in 2006. The designation was awarded on 17 June 2007 on the Teichalm.
The respective state government designates a rural region as a nature preserve.
The Naturpark Almenland’s mandate is to preserve this ancient cultivated landscape (shaped by humans over the course of centuries, with meaningful agricultural use continuing to this day), for example through the partial restoration of the open alpine scenery. Keeping traditional working methods and the subsistence strategies of farmers alive, such as cutting shingles, crafting water troughs, mowing with scythes, building wooden fences and drying hay on wooden racks, is also important. This can for example be accomplished by boosting the sale of regional products in the nature preserve. Important projects include ALMO quality beef production, renewable energy initiatives and wood processing.
A distinction for the region
The awarding of the “nature preserve” designation is a great distinction for our region and the man-made, cultivated landscape that is typical for the Almenland. Shaped by human hands, the landscape is honoured and appreciated with all the changes that time brings with it.
On 12 August 2006 the Styrian municipalities of Arzberg, Breitenau am Hochlantsch, Fladnitz an der Teichalm, Gasen, Haslau bei Birkfeld, Hohenau an der Raab, Koglhof, Naintsch, Passail, Pernegg an der Mur, St. Kathrein am Offenegg, Tulwitz and Tyrnau were designated as the “Naturpark Almenland” by the state of Styria.
The Naturpark Almenland extends from Rabenwald in the east to the Bärenschützklamm in the west. All 13 municipalities in the Almenland with similar landscape types are part of the Naturpark Almenland.
The designation was awarded on 17 June 2006 with a ceremonial act on the Teichalm.
Figures, data and facts
The Naturpark Almenland is the largest contiguous low alpine pasture area in Europe at 464 to 1720 metres above sea level. 14,500 people live in six municipalities on an area of 253 km².
- Guiding theme: ALMerLEBEN – “Nature has its place – for your enjoyment”
- Leading product: ALMO and a variety of beef specialities
- Flora and fauna: Upland moor biotope with sundew, orchids, silicate flora on the Kirchkogel, Alpine longhorn beetle, black stork, kingfisher, capercaillie and ibex
- Jewels of nature: Bärenschützklamm, Raabklamm, Teichalm Latschenhochmoor,
- Protected areas: Teichalm Hochmoor nature conservation area, Natura 2000 Raabklamm European protected area, Natura 2000 am Kirchkogel in Pernegg, Bärenschützklamm natural monument
Section 8 – Styrian Nature Conservation Law
Accessible to the public, the Almenland landscape offers especially favourable conditions for imparting knowledge about nature and for recreation through the interaction of natural factors. The region has been designated as a landscape conservation area (Section 5 (2) (a), Sections 6 and 7). Its adventure, education and recreational value is increased through management and design measures, for example by building hiking trails, nature trails, animal enclosures, botanical gardens, rest and picnic areas, lookouts and play areas based on a landscape management plan (Section 31).