The research and practice company for the dairy farm Dairy Campus not only offers space for cows and research, but also provides space for meadow birds. The Wetlands has been reactivated this spring on the plots near Dairy Campus. This provides a paradise for lapwings and other meadow birds.
This Wetland on a plot of Dairy Campus the size of a football field, was constructed at the end of 2007. The construction was part of the EU project “Farmers for Nature” and was financed with resources from the Province of Friesland at the time. This Wetlands does not stand alone. Most of the Netherlands' wetland plots can be found in the provinces of Friesland and South Holland. These are also typical meadow bird provinces. In 2019, 465 hectares of Wetlandss were set up for the meadow birds. These areas are attractive resting and foraging areas for meadow birds returning from Africa in the spring.
More and more entrepreneurs are flooding part of their land to make a positive contribution to meadow birds. Wetlands is created by flooding or submerging low parts of the country, for example from February 15 to June 15. In some cases even all year round. Mostly with special pumps, which work on solar energy, the water is maintained. The Wetlands on Dairy Campus fills up in early spring by opening the weir. The miller then fills the Wetlands with the help of the windmill. These plots on Dairy Campus are especially popular with lapwings, godwits and redshanks. In and around the edges, these meadow birds look for worms and larvae. Here the birds can gain energy for the new breeding season. During the breeding season, the edges are a good growing area for the young birds.
A successful breeding season requires more than just Wetlands. In agricultural collectives, farmers and land users therefore work together on appropriate management in which sufficient food and safe breeding grounds can be found for the meadow birds. At Dairy Campus we work a lot in this area with the birdwatchers and hunters who are in charge of this region. In addition, measures are taken here on the nearby plots, such as mowing later and sowing herb-rich grassland or field edges. Dairy Campus also focuses on increasing biodiversity. At the moment, there are various tests running around the cultivation of herb-rich grasses.
At that time, the construction of a Wetlands of water was reimbursed. The former dairy farm Bosma Zathe also received an annual payment from the project for loss of yield. At the end of this project, a fee was received first, which was eventually completely phased out. In various designated regions in the Netherlands, entrepreneurs do receive compensation for loss of income through Agricultural Nature and Landscape Management. This compensation averages around € 2,000 per hectare.