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at Gesäuse National Park


The winners of the Gesäuse Innovation Award

Innovation takes a region further. The Gesäuse partners launched their own competition on this topic in 2019.

A jury of experts selected the winners from many exciting entries on 2 December at the Pirafelner Inn:

Bronze: Christoph Baumberger with the "mobile observatory" project
Silver: Birgit and Matthias Schmiedberger with Forstauer's Hofbräu
Gold: Bianca Rohrer and Ulrich Matlschweiger from Gasthaus Hoamat with the delicatessen "Kostbar".

We congratulate you!

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Two Heidis for the National Park

Since 2 December, the National Park team has been strengthened by two ladies:

Heidi Kaltenböck supports the Communications Department full-time with the creation of the new website, the promotion of events and the "Gesäuse Partner" project.

Heidi Erlinger is working part-time in the Admont Information Office in the area of guest services and front office.

We are looking forward to a good cooperation!

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Photo School 2020 new course programme

Schauplatz Natur - Following the motto "Nothing touches us like the untouched", course participants at the Gesäuse Photo School can expect not only untouched nature in the 2020 season, but also like-minded people and a passion for nature and landscape photography. You can download the new course programme for the 2020 season here:



A new species of beetle?

The GRAWE-sidebyside Youth Advisory Council is looking for a new species at the Lugau Summit.

The short-winged beetles, beetles of the family Staphylinidae, have been in the sights of National Park researchers for a long time. In this species-rich group, 16 species with endemic distribution patterns have been identified.
One species, however, was out of the ordinary: Two females, supposedly of Tectusa montana, were found on the Lugauer, but their previously known distribution area is in the Seckau Alps. This and the different characteristics of the animals suggested that a completely new species colonises the Gesäuse summit.
With the help of the GRAWE-sidebyside Youth Advisory Council, funding for further investigations was established in summer 2018. Strict scientific proof has not yet been achieved, but the endemic cannot hide forever...



It's fair time!

The Gesäuse National Park was represented simultaneously at two information fairs from 7 to 10 November. The "Interpädagogica" and the "Photo Adventure" provide a good stage to present the school programme and the Gesäuse Photo School to a wide target audience.


Visit from the Danube Floodplain National Park

From 10-11 October, our National Park was visited by three interns from the Donau-Auen National Park. During their stay, they were able to get to know a completely different natural environment: the rapids on the Enns in the Gesäuse instead of the quiet waters in the oxbow lakes of the Danube and the rugged rock faces of the Gesäuse mountains as a contrast to the gentle Danube floodplains.

Visit Danube



Finally, the time has come again - the new Winter 2019 issue of the National Park magazine "Im Gseis" is here. The magazine is available free of charge at the information office in Admont as well as at the information stands of our Gesäuse partners. The pdf can be downloaded from the download page of our homepage.
You can also subscribe to our magazine free of charge. Please send a mail, letter or fax with your name and address to:
Karin Lattacher, Gesäuse National Park GmbH, 8913 Weng im Gesäuse 2
Fax: +43 3613 21000 18



Xeis cleaning 2019

Every autumn the Gesäuse National Park initiates a campaign to beautify the landscape in the Gesäuse. In plain language, this means that there is a call for joint, cheerful litter-picking and cleaning. A lot helps a lot. And fortunately, every year there are helpers who don't find it too stupid to put in a few hours of their time for a clean Xeis.
The action was also supported by a raft boat from the outdoor company Strobl, which is on the lookout for rubbish along the banks of the Enns. In addition to many National Park employees, the Steiermärkische Landesforste, the Berg- und Naturwacht and the Bergrettung Admont were also involved. From the entrance to the Gesäuse to the Planspitzengraben along the road and on the banks of the Enns, we found and collected everything possible and impossible, a whole trailer full again.
For example, a tyre and a wheel, both from a small truck. Well, a tyre like that can accidentally come off and roll into the forest, can't it!
Neophytes that cross our path are also removed. This time it was rather the Canada goldenrod that had to give way to our work frenzy.
From the Gstatterboden bridge downstream to the Hartelsgraben bridge, the Gesäuse-Gstatterboden fishing association always keeps a watchful eye and is constantly on the lookout for rubbish. Countless bags of rubbish have already been collected and disposed of professionally.
And once again: Thank you to everyone who supported this good cause!



Styrian Chamber of Agriculture on a visit

This year's company outing took the Legal Department of LK Steiermark, led by Department Head Mag. Elisabeth Haas and Mag. Simon Gerhardter, to the Gesäuse National Park. At the foot of the Hochtor group, the group calculated their ecological footprint under the guidance of ranger Viktoria Vanek. The result is exemplary! The Chamber staff is also close to local agriculture in their private lives, and so the result was a resource consumption that is significantly below the Austrian average.

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School Programme 2020

The new school programme 2020 of the Gesäuse National Park is here!

Just in time for the start of school, our current school programme lands in all Styrian and many Austrian schools. The Gesäuse National Park stands for untouched nature in abundance, wild water and steep rock - an ideal place for children and young people to experience nature, a place of adventure and research, of observation and understanding.

The Gesäuse National Park, awarded the Austrian Eco-label for extracurricular educational institutions and winner of the Climate Protection Prize, offers all the ingredients for exciting project days and project weeks and combines exciting shared adventures, enjoyment of nature and fun in the class community with the unique opportunity to get up close and personal with natural processes.

Accompanied by highly trained and certified National Park Rangers, the days in the National Park become a very special experience with exciting content. Partner establishments in and around the Gesäuse National Park are involved as accommodation for programmes lasting several days. The "Gesäuse Lodge" in Gstatterboden is a new accommodation option which, thanks to its ideal location in the middle of the National Park, offers particularly cost-effective and attractive packages without additional transfers! Focal themes such as the natural experience of rock, the water habitat or the infinite diversity of the original forests of the Gesäuse offer a lasting experience through the perfect combination of experience, adventure and knowledge transfer. Overnight stays in the ranger camp, first climbing experiences around the alpine workshop in the Haindlkar or the nature experience trip along the untouched banks of the Enns offer plenty of opportunities to experience this unique natural jewel: the only Styrian Gesäuse National Park!

All information as well as assistance with registration & booking of school experience programmes from: Dr. Isabella Mitterböck, Tel.: +43 3613 211 60 60 and: isabella.mitterboeck@nationalpark.co.at



Offspring everywhere

Nature grows and thrives. The fledging capercaillie hens are also discovering their world. Today they are still picking blueberries under the care of the old hen, in September they will be on their own.



Forest fire

On 1 July 2019, lightning caused a fire at the forest border of the National Park in the municipality of Landl. Approximately 0.5 ha were affected in very steep terrain at 1100 m above sea level. Three helicopters from the Austrian Armed Forces and the Ministry of the Interior were involved in the fire-fighting efforts. They were supported by the volunteer fire brigades of Großreifling (head of operations), Kirchenlandl, Mooslandl, Altenmarkt, Oberreith, Hall, Aigen im Ennstal, Liezen Stadt and the Landl mountain rescue service.

The fire brigades filled a water supply with tankers in shuttle traffic, from which the federal army helicopters took the fire-fighting water. Firefighters in the area were secured by the mountain rescuers. The fire was finally extinguished on 4 July. Our thanks go to all the emergency services involved!
By the way, regardless of the potential danger, forest fires must always be extinguished in Austria, even in national parks. The legal basis for this is the Forest Act.



The whole forest is looking for Therehsa

Current new publication: The whole forest is looking for TheRehsa. A children's book written by the GRAWE sidebyside Youth Advisory Council of the Gesäuse National Park and illustrated by Horst Hellmeier. The Youth Advisory Council implements its own projects in the Gesäuse National Park that revolve around nature conservation and communication.
Would you like to join us? Then write an email to Nora Landl jugendbeirat@nationalpark.co.at



Gesäuse Innovation Award 2019

In 2019, the partner network will announce an innovation award for the first time. We think that more ideas are good for our region and that the best ideas should be rewarded.

Conditions of participation and submission details at:

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Gesäuse Photographer 2019

Gesäuse Photographer 2019: And the winner is...
On Sunday 30 June, the Gesäuse Photofestival presented the Gesäuse Photographer 2019. For those who were not there, here is the winning photo by Prague landscape photographer Lukáš Veselý. A more than worthy winner, in our opinion. We are definitely looking forward to more from him and to his exhibition at the Photo Festival 2020. Blahopřejeme!

Gesäuse Photographer 2019


We sing a song to the earwig

Expert visit to the Gesäuse: Danilo Matzke, an entomologist from Leipzig with a somewhat unusual predilection - namely for earwigs - spent a day in the National Park in search of this often unnoticed group of insects. And indeed, in addition to the commonly known common earwig, another species was tracked down in the National Park - the mountain forest earwig.

The flightless mountain forest earwig is an insect of twilight and night. Only then does it go in search of food on the forest floor. It eats almost anything that comes between its mouthparts, regardless of whether it is of animal or plant origin. During the day, it hides under dead wood, bark or stones.
Hidden under such deadwood, a female was discovered with her clutch (see photo). The female remains with her clutch until the larvae hatch and cares for it carefully. Shortly after the larvae hatch, the female dies and is eaten by her offspring as the first feast of her life - that is true motherly love...

Bergwald earwig


Vandalism in the orchid kingdom

Hundreds of flowers of the rare and protected lady's slipper have been torn off in the last few days. The lady's slipper is one of almost 50 orchid species in the Gesäuse National Park. It has a special connection to soil fungi; if you dig it up, it cannot continue to grow in other locations. If you pick it, it cannot form fruit clusters to reproduce.
The National Park Act provides for fines of up to €50,000 for such acts of vandalism. Whoever did it, shame on you!

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Offspring at the river

Now it is finally here, summer! And the first young sandpipers have also hatched. As every year, these migratory birds come to us from Africa in April and establish their territories on the numerous gravel islands and varied banks of the Enns. This year it seems that not all pairs have found a suitable territory and moved in. However, at least one has successfully bred and two young sandpipers were confirmed a few days ago. It still takes a few days until they can fly and bring themselves to safety from predators and the high water that is currently prevailing due to the melting snow. Spring floods often lead to the loss of nests that are not flood-proofed. However, sandpipers can lay a second clutch of eggs and thus ensure reproduction. We therefore wish the first chicks of the season good conditions for growing up and then a good flight back to the warm south.



The new "Im Gseis" is here

Finally, the time has come again - the new summer 2019 issue of the National Park magazine "Im Gseis" is here. The magazine is available free of charge at the information office in Admont as well as at the information stands of our Gesäuse partners. The pdf can be downloaded from the download page of our homepage.
You can also subscribe to our magazine free of charge. Please send a mail, letter or fax with your name and address to:
Karin Lattacher, Gesäuse National Park GmbH, 8913 Weng im Gesäuse 2
Fax: +43 3613 21000 18




A day with the collection photographers - this exclusive photo workshop with the renowned "collection photographers" Sebastian Köpcke and Volker Weinhold focuses on natural fruit from the Gesäuse region and the historical wax fruit replicas by Father Constantin Keller from Admont Abbey. What is real, what is a seemingly perfect replica?
Arrangements are made with studio flash equipment, photographs are taken under supervision and guidance, and the photos are judged together. Other objects such as historical books, household and kitchen utensils, spirits, dried flowers and taxidermy are also included in the staging. The collection photographers Sebastian Köpcke and Volker Weinhold realise such projects in European museums (www.sammlungsfotografen. de) and impart their knowledge to the participants.

Direction: Sebastian Köpcke, Volker Weinhold
Date: Fri, 5 July 2019
Time: 10:00 am - approx. 5:00 pm
Meeting point: Entrance Museum Stift Admont
Cost per participant: € 89
min. 5, max. 12 participants
What to bring: Photo equipment
Registration: Up to 1 week before the start of the course at
Tel.: 0676/966 83 78




Representatives of the service providers along the Lynx Trail and from all stage towns prepared together for the first Lynx Trail hiking season at the Mosswirt in Landl. The Lynx Trail brings the Dürrenstein Wilderness Area and the Kalkalpen and Gesäuse National Parks closer together. These areas stand for forest wilderness and the advocacy for the survival of the small lynx population is also a common concern for them. Link to the website of the long-distance trail: www.luchstrail.at

Link to current lynx detections in the Styrian Enns Valley: https://www.nationalpark.co.at/de/projekte/luchsprojektgruppe-2/4206-luchsmeldungen-aus-dem-ennstal

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Friendly reception in the pavilion

The National Park Pavilion in Gstatterboden has been open again since the first of May.
Waiting for you inside:

+ an information point of the Gesäuse National Park
+ an experiential exhibition on the tip of the plan and
+ Michi and Steff, the new hosts with charm and regional delicacies




Until the end of October, there will again be a photo exhibition in the Sägestadel Gstatterboden. This year we are showing - with free admission - large-format pictures on the theme of wilderness from the Dürrenstein Wilderness Area and the Kalkalpen and Gesäuse National Parks. If you want to discover these magnificent landscapes for yourself, the best way is to follow the tracks of the lynxes: www.luchstrail.at.



I'm back, hurray!

We welcome the first sandpipers to the National Park area. As every year, the migratory birds returned from southern Africa in the first half of April. We expect four to six pairs to settle and hope for good breeding success in 2019.
The "Risennagerl" is still a little long in coming. This is what the vernacular calls the ornamental feathered carnation, which is at home in the steep gullies (Risen). The two species are our prominent representatives from the habitats "Wild Water" and "Steep Rock" in the Styrian Gesäuse National Park.



Patchwork with the Steinadler family

In spring, nature awakens to new life. The king of the skies is also inspired by the spring feelings and thinks about reproduction. This year, two of the three golden eagle pairs in the National Park have started breeding. However, it was not easy to find out this year: to determine whether and in which eyrie they are breeding, you have to carefully observe the behaviour of the majestic animals. The pair in the Johnsbach Valley apparently did not want to make it too easy for the experts this year. Actually, golden eagles are on the move together at this time of year. At the moment, however, a very young eagle is also staying with the pair in question and has caused some confusion. The young bird probably hatched last year, but the two adults from the Johnsbach valley are certainly not its parents, as they did not breed last year. Normally, a young eagle leaves the parental territory at the age of 5 months to look for its own and, above all, unoccupied territory. So patchwork is not really the order of the day! It is therefore extremely unusual that this eagle is allowed to stay with an unfamiliar eagle pair. Let's hope that he does not cause too much stress in the territory and that this year's brood will be successful!



Biotope network - Lynx - Long-distance migration

The Lynx Trail is picking up speed. Signs are currently being erected at the stage locations, such as in Admont (Photo: David Osebik).
For more information, visit www.luchstrail.at or https://www.bookyourtrail.com/trail/luchs-trail/angebote.

Natural and pristine forests, bizarre rocks and roaring waters - the new long-distance hiking trail Luchs Trail brings wild nature to life. It leads through the Kalkalpen National Park in Upper Austria, the Gesäuse National Park in Styria and the Dürrenstein Wilderness Area in Lower Austria. These three protected areas have taken the initiative to network the protected habitats and thus secure the natural treasures in the long term. The main goal is to establish a functional biotope network that enables as many forest-bound species as possible to exchange between their core habitats. This is also the case for the lynx, for which this mountain landscape has once again become home.

A total of 12,000 metres in altitude and 220 kilometres in eleven stages are to be overcome on the Lynx Trail. No walk, but a worthwhile hike that is rewarded with fascinating views, warm encounters and a journey to oneself.



Nature conservation officers in the National Park

On 30 March 2019, the Styrian branch of the Alpine Club hosted a Nature Conservation Day in the Gesäuse National Park. In the morning, the Alpine Rescue Service kindly made its training room available. Liliana Dagostin, Head of the Department for Spatial Planning and Nature Conservation in the main association, reported "News from Innsbruck" and reminded in particular of the two main interests of the Alpine Association according to its statutes, namely unadulterated mountain experience and nature conservation.

National Park Director Herbert Wölger and National Park Ranger Raimund Reiter explained the differences between national parks and nature parks and explained how nature conservation and visitor numbers can be reconciled in the national park. Hans Peter Scheb, mountain sports officer of the Admont Gesäuse Section, honorary chairman of the Alpine Rescue Service and champion of the Gesäuse National Park, spoke about the necessity of regulating the increasing traffic problems in the run-up to the National Park by means of parking and mobility systems.
The afternoon belonged to an excursion into the wild forest of the national park and the question whether it is allowed to look untidy in the forest?

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Research scholarship

Young researchers wanted!
Research under the open sky - apply for the NationalparksAustria 1TP5 research grant by 30 April!

We are looking for young researchers (Master, Diploma or PhD) who would like to use the Austrian national parks as outdoor laboratories. Exciting ideas and concepts around the topic of "Biodiversity and Process Conservation" can be submitted online now!

"Biodiversity and process conservation" is a topic that can be examined from many points of view. We are looking forward to your submissions!

More information at: www.nationalparksaustria.at/Forschungsstipendium2019



Finally! Media scholarship

Finally! National Parks Austria media grant! Many creative minds have already been trembling. Will there be another National Parks Austria Media Fellowship or not? The answer is: Yes! And you can apply until 31 March 2019.

Click here for the announcement

National Parks Austria Call for Proposals 2019


Winter huts in the National Park

The high snowfalls make for deeply snow-covered huts on the alpine pastures in the Gesäuse National Park. We don't need to worry about the stability of the roofs - unlike some buildings in the valley. These huts are located in the "preservation zone", where cattle are allowed to graze in summer. In the majority of the National Park, nature is left to its own devices!



At the top

This year's Ranger Olympics "Memorial Danilo Re" took place from 24.01.-27.01.2019 in the nature reserve Contamines-Montjoie (FRA). In addition to the sporting competition, consisting of ski mountaineering, giant slalom, shooting and cross-country skiing, the professional aspect and the exchange with other Alpine protected areas were not neglected. There were 50 teams at the start, with the Gesäuse represented by a women's team and a mixed team from NP Gesäuse and NP Kalkalpen.

Everyone was surprised when the award ceremony suddenly said "something new" and the women's team of the Gesäuse NP was at the top of the podium. The joy is enormous, not only to be the winner of the hearts, but also to be at the top in sporting terms. This victory is probably thanks to our ladies Theresa Fuxjäger (2nd place shooting) and Magdalena Delvai (3rd place giant slalom).

The long journey to the Mont Blanc region was therefore more than worth it. Will we be able to defend our title next year in Mittersill?

all the way up


National Park in the classroom

Last Saturday showed that the Open Day at NMS Admont is not a day like any other. Not only did a large number of the pupils themselves help to present their school on their day off without hesitation, but also the "trump card" of being a national park school came into its own.

After the event, the headmistress reported that for some pupils and their parents, the decisive reason for choosing the NMS was the integration of the national park into the lessons. So: Nature rules! We are therefore pleased and see it as an appreciation and further incentive for our work with young people.




Positive results for school project days and weeks

The Gesäuse National Park offers school groups year-round adventure, enjoyment of nature, fun in the community and the opportunity to get up close and personal with natural processes. For this reason, more and more schools from all over Austria are showing their enthusiasm for the tailor-made packages and programmes that are optimally adapted to the environment.

Since the founding of the National Park, the number of visitors has almost doubled and a record was set last year, especially for the multi-day events - proof of the high quality of the educational programme and the importance of nature and environmental education!

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Well prepared

... to the current snow situation is our winter supervision service!

At the annual avalanche training course at the beginning of January with mountain and ski guide René Guhl (Alpinschule Bergpuls), participants practised using an avalanche transceiver, probe and shovel, the correct behaviour in the event of an avalanche, as well as assessing the avalanche situation and recognising potential dangers in the terrain. A nature conservation input on the 4 different grouse in the National Park and their distinguishing features perfectly rounded off the exciting and intensive course.

This training is compulsory for all bodies carrying out winter supervision services and is not only for their own safety, but also to ensure that they can provide rapid assistance in an emergency.

avalanche course


Winter mobility restrictions for humans and animals

Winter has the National Park firmly in its grip. At the Tamischbach Tower, the snow depth has reached 4 metres and gusts of up to 100 km/h are blowing.

The intense snowfall has created a latent avalanche danger. For this reason, all roads in the national park had to be closed.

In principle, wild animals do not enjoy winter. Not only does the sparse food disappear under the blanket of snow, but getting around also becomes tedious.

Photo: Christian Mayer