Case study:Dommeldal: cross-border habitat restoration in the Dommel Valley
To discuss or comment on this case study, please use the discussion page.
- 1 Project overview
- 2 Image gallery
- 3 Catchment and subcatchment
- 4 Site
- 5 Project background
- 6 Reasons for river restoration
- 7 Measures
- 8 Monitoring
- 9 Additional documents and videos
- 10 Additional links and references
- 11 Supplementary Information
|Project web site|
|Main contact forename||Tom|
|Main contact surname||De Beelde|
|Main contact user ID|
|Contact organisation web site||http://www.natuurpunt.be/default.aspx|
|Parent multi-site project|
| This is a parent project
encompassing the following
In the 1950s, the river Dommel was straightened, the water levels became lower and changes in land use practices led to increased input of nutrients, afforestation with exotic tree species and abandonment of extensive uses. Habitats and species decreased in variety in consequence.
The ‘Dommeldal’ project aimed to establish an ecological corridor between the heath habitats of the Hoge Kempen and the heath habitats in North Brabant by restoring habitats along the valley, supporting species migration along the river.
The project resulted in the restoration of valuable habitats from Peer in Flanders up to Valkenswaard in the Netherlands. Typical Campine nature, such as land dunes, heathlands, ponds, irrigated grasslands (‘vloeiweiden’), orchid-rich hayfields and alluvial forests, were restored, and new opportunities were created for threatened species, such as the European nightjar, the natterjack toad ( Epidalea calamita) and the alcon blue butterfly (Phengaris alcon).
As part of the project, many lots were swapped with local farmers to stop soil degradation and area loss. A total of 130 000 m3 nutrient-rich soil was removed and land topography was restored. A dozen ponds were created along with the easing of smooth transitions towards drier sandy land. Around 25ha of uniform softwood stands at Hageven-De Plateaux were removed to restore heath habitats.
Hiking paths were reconstructed and new visitor guides were created to ensure local involvement. Also much information has been disseminated in the area, by means of information panels and exhibitions. Local farmers and volunteers associated with the beneficiary will be involved in the management of the area after the LIFE project.
Monitoring surveys and results
Catchment and subcatchment
Cost for project phases
Supplementary funding information
EU contribution 2,676,579.00 €
Reasons for river restoration
Hydromorphological quality elements
Biological quality elements
Physico-chemical quality elements
Additional documents and videos