Contractual nature conservation is the hallmark of Bavaria's cooperative nature conservation policy. It specifically rewards farmers and other land users for the particularly nature-friendly management of ecologically valuable areas. The aim is to preserve biodiversity, primarily by implementing the Natura 2000 European network of protected areas and the Bavarian Biodiversity Strategy.
The contract-based nature conservation program promotes the careful management of ecologically valuable meadows, pastures, fields and ponds. Farmers and other land managers undertake to manage the land in accordance with nature conservation objectives for a period of five years.
Basic services such as the late mowing of a meadow or the extensive use of arable land can be flexibly combined with additional services, e.g. the renunciation of fertilizers and pesticides or difficulties (e.g. mowing with a knife mower, motor mower, moisture surcharge, etc.). This modular approach creates the possibility to specifically address the respective habitats and the animal and plant species found therein, but also the requirements of the respective farms.
The subsidy is intended to compensate for the additional costs involved in nature-conserving management and the loss of income.