© Marcel Burkhardt
Horch, P. & R. Spaar (2015)
Die Situation des Braunkehlchens in der Schweiz, getestete Fördermassnahmen und Ergebnisse.
In: Bastian H-V, Feulner J (Eds.): Living on the Edge of Extinction in Europe. Proc. 1st European Whinchat Symposium: 285-292. LBV Hof, Helmbrechts
The whinchat Saxicola rubetra is an endangered meadow-breeding bird species. In Switzerland its populations have been declining since the 1930s. Apart from a few isolated populations, the whinchat has disappeared from valleys in the lowland Plateau. Over the last 20 years, it has suffered further severe loss of area in the pre-alps and the Jura mountains. Today, whinchats primarily populate sub-alpine grassland managed at low intensity. Coordinated by the Swiss Species Recovery Programme for Birds, the Swiss Ornithological Institute has implemented conservation measures in several regions in Switzerland. These measures are either (1) nest protection, (2) small-area grassland management such as uncut grass stands or increased supply of perches or (3) large-scale adapted grassland management. Meanwhile, it shows that the only promising long-term measures are those securing large-scale, late-cut flower meadows. The other two types of measures could neither prevent further population decline nor the deterioration of vegetation and food supply. Future activities for the conservation of the whinchat in the Swiss Alps have to be targeted according to this finding, ranging from adaptations on the political level to the actual management on farms. Some of the legal, financial and structural framework conditions already exist, but need to be urgently modified or extended.