Nature parks are valuable natural and cultural landscapes that can be decreed as protected areas by nature conservation departments of the federal states. They offer a unique and special diversity of landscapes, which are characterized by an interesting wealth of animal and plant species as well as significant biotic communities. In addition to natural landscapes, cultural landscapes that have been shaped by the interaction of man and nature over time are maintained and preserved.
Five nature parks are currently officially recognized in the province of Tyrol. The designation nature park is a distinction - a predicate - for a protected area and therefore does not represent a protection category of its own.
The Tyrolean Nature Conservation Act 2005 describes a nature park in paragraph 12 as follows:
"The provincial government may declare generally accessible landscape protection areas, rest areas, nature conservation areas and special protection areas or parts thereof, which are particularly suitable for outdoor recreation or for imparting knowledge about nature and which are appropriately designed and maintained for this purpose, to be nature parks by ordinance."
The existence and further development of these protected landscape areas is an important concern of the48 Austrian nature parks (as of 05.03.2014; www.naturparke.at). According to the Association of Nature Parks in Austria, these nature parks cover a total area of around 500,000 hectares throughout Austria (as of 05.03.2014; www.naturparke.at).
The Association of Nature Parks of Austria (VNÖ) describes a nature park as follows:
"A nature park is a protected landscape area that has arisen from the interaction of man and nature. Often these are landscape areas that have taken on their present form over the course of centuries and are to be preserved by the people who live and farm here through gentle forms of land use and landscape conservation. In the nature park, this cultural landscape of special aesthetic appeal is made accessible to visitors through special facilities and made accessible as a recreational area."
These statements already include three important functions of a nature park - nature conservation, education and recreation. A fourth important task field is regional development. However, the nature parks in Tyrol have expanded their tasks, so that now five pillars support the Tyrolean nature parks.
Please do not enter the gravel banks during the breeding season from the end of April to mid-August!
In this way, contribute to the protection of ground-nesting birds such as sandpipers and little ringed plovers. People and dogs are among the biggest disturbance factors for the protected bird species.