Ecology and restoration of drained mires in the Sumava National Park (Czech Republic)

Ivana Bufkova, Frantisek Stibal and Eva Loskotova

After Wise Use – The Future of Peatlands, Proceedings of the 13th International Peat Congress: Peatland After-Use

drained-mires, hydrochemistry, restoration, vegetation

Bufkova et al. 2008: Ecology and restoration of drained mires in the Sumava


Almost 70% of peatlands in the Sumava Mts. (Czech Republic) have been influenced by drainage in the past. In 1999, a Programme of Peatland Restoration started to be implemented in the area with the aim to restore disturbed hydrology and to stop mire degradation caused by drainage. The main restoration technique used was blocking of drainage ditches by set of board dams. In 2005, both drained and intact peatlands were selected in the area to study degradation changes induced by disturbed hydrology and to evaluate the success of restoration. Water table fluctuation, hydrochemistry of groundwater, peat soil chemistry, amount of precipitation, vegetation on permanent plots (57) and runoff from small catchments were monitored. Three years of pre-restoration monitoring show that the water table is maintained in a lower position than a natural system and exhibits higher fluctuations in direct relation to the amount of precipitation received on drained sites. The pH of groundwater had lower values in general on drained bogs. Recession of hollow and lawn vegetation and expansion of competitive grasses (Molinia caerulea) or trees (Picea abies) towards the bog expanse were recorded on drained sites. Restoration of monitored drained sites will be performed in 2008 with the same monitoring design following.