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Sustainable use of alpine and pre-alpine grassland soils in a changing climate

Grassland ecosystems are widely spread in the alps and the foothills of the alps of southern Germany and cover an area of more than one million hectares. From an economical point of view, grasslands are precious as they provide fodder for dairy and cattle farming. In addition to their economic value, they fulfill important ecosystem functions such as the storage of carbon and nitrogen, water retention, protection against erosion and biodiviersity. However, changes in climate, land use and grassland managenent jeopardize the multiple functions provided by grasslands.

The aim of the SUSALPS project is to improve our knowledge on the effects of current and future climate and management on ecosystem functions performed by grasslands. In the process, the general framework of the socio-economy of the specific geographic region will be considered. Based on this improved knowledge, sustainable management options for grasslands in the alps and the foothills of the alps will be developed. These management options will be especially designed to support the climate protection function of grassland soils.


Take an active part in shaping reseach in SUSALPS with our survey.

Practical relevance and transparency are explicit goals of our project. Therefore, we would be pleased to receive your support by answering our questionnaire (in German only)!

If you have experiences in the management of grasslands, use this questionnaire:
Link to the online questionnaire for farmers

If you are interested in grassland, but do not cultivate grasslands by yourself, use this questionnaire:
Link to the online questionnaire for farmers


SUSALPS and the association for bird protection (LBV) issue a brochure on biodiversity and soil functions on mountain pastures

Based on findings of the SUSALPS re-grazing experiment on Brunnenkopfalm, LBV and the SUSALPS project partners issued a brochure on biodiversity and soil functions of mountain pastures. The brochure (first issue printed 6000...[more]

Looking from the sky - drone flight over the Brunnenkopfalm

At the end of July we were ready again - we changed our perspective for our regrazing experiment on the Brunnenkopfalm. After we had to postpone our annual drone flight several times due to unsettled weather, the prospects for...[more]

Big interdisciplinary field campaign

At the beginning of the SUSALPS project, more than 800 undisturbed soil columns with vegetation (so-called plant-soil mesocosms) were translocated along an elevation gradient to simulate climate change and to investigate the...[more]

Grasland production and management observed from space

Satellite data can be used to study the characteristics of grassland, such as plant growth or use, on a large scale. Since the availability of the first satellite data in the 1970s and 1980s, research in this area has been...[more]