Nature Park Meadows Maintenance (Albinen VS)
Description: The regional natural park “Pfyn-Finges“ lies between Gampel and Sierre in a mountain valley of Switzerland called “Valais”. As the regional instrument for sustainable development, the natural park “Pfyn-Finges” is committed to a wide range of projects. Agriculture has a major influence on the landscape and the biodiversity. For this reason the natural park “Pfyn-Finges“ coordinates volunteer work to help maintain the alpine meadows. There is lots of work to accomplish each year, which the farmers alone will not be able to handle. Albinen is situated in a beautiful place on the sun blessed side of Valais on an altitude of 1270 m with great views. There are not only a great variety of different wildlife – like chamois or bearded vulture – but also breath-taking hiking trails.
Type of Work: The magnificent landscape of this part of Switzerland is formed by its cultural heritage. Not so long ago, farmers used all existent meadows to feed their cattle. Sheep, goats and cows would clear meadows in all altitudes and expositions. Nowadays those precious areas for biodiversity are slowly closing in by shrubs and trees. In this workcamp we will help the farmers to keep their land open and prepare it for their cattle. Work like removing fast growing shrubs and trees, cleaning the meadows of sticks and stones and putting up mobile fences will be part of this workcamp. Be prepared for hard physical work. The working area is very steep and might be slippery.
Study Theme: Lots of other species benefit from this sustainable and ecological management of the meadows. We will go more in depth explaining and understanding the magnificent relationships in nature during the workcamp. History about the local farm & the tradition of moving the sheep from the valleys to the local alp. Sheep farmers are also confronted with the returning of the wolf. Furthermore we will provide an introduction to the wildlife and typical vegetation of Valais. The information will be given at the beginning and during the work, as well as during your leisure time activities.
Accommodation: The housing will be provided in Albinen, a little mountain village. The house holds all necessary accommodations including W-LAN and a washing machine. Volunteers will cook together. Be aware that the upper floors (sleeping rooms) are connected with a vertical ladder.
Language: English, German & Swiss German
Requirements: Please do not book your travel before we confirm having the minimum number of 5 volunteers subscribed.
Notes: Leisure activities: We will explore together the magnificent nature and cultural highlights of the Nature park perimeter. This could include Mountain peaks (heights depending on participants and the snow situation) and visiting the sheep farm. We could do hiking along the lakeside of Gemmi, the famous “Pfyn”-Forest and the wild Rhone-plain. Guides from the Nature Park will accompany you on one day. Other days you might just want to relax and enjoy the quietness on the mountain site.