Evaluation of Biodiversity of Friendly Farmers’ Participation in the Lithuanian Management of Protected Areas

Pranas Mierauskas

Abstract


The aim of this article is to overview the motivation for biodiversity of friendly farming and to investigate willingness and possibilities of Lithuanian farmers to participate in the management of protected areas. Lithuanian farmers are participating in different agri-environmental schemes, but participation is not widely used in practice. Agri-environmental schemes are oriented to involve more landowners and reach quantity results focusing of farmers’ participation, but not seeking for the biodiversity of oriented quality results and outputs. Friendly farming programmes are not state funded, but they usually get their funds from international conservation projects. Lithuanian landowners are not expressing a high degree of willingness to participate in addition in biodiversity conservation programmes, but a certain amount of farmers are already involved in them and there are quite widely spread potential participators. The results of the investigation showed that farmers who have higher understanding of biodiversity would be willing to participate in additional programmes. Biodiversity of friendly farmers could be the potential stakeholders in the management of protected areas. The results of the interview with 80 Lithuanian farmers participating in agro-environmental measures showed that they would be willing to participate in the protected areas management in different ways. One part of them would like to participate in consultation dialogues, others in decision making process or participating in joint protected areas’ administrations councils, but some of them stated that they would not be able to participate. The farmers expressed opinions that participation in any form would allow to avoid conflicts between landowners and protected area’s administration staff.

Keywords


protected areas management; stakeholders; biodiversity friendly farming; farmers; agro-environmental measures

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.13165/SMS-14-6-2-12

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"Societal studies" ISSN online 2029-2244 / ISSN print 2029-2236