In May, Röbäcksdalen and Lönnstorp station received the good news that they can be a part of the Lifeplan project, which is a global project to monitor biodiversity. Many of the other SITES stations are already participating. However, intensive management and the urban location of the two agricultural stations made it difficult to fit into the original model of Lifeplan. However, SITES and Lifeplan have now agreed on a modified participation for the two agricultural stations.
The modified participation includes two monitoring activities, where Lifeplan provides the equipment and SITES supports analyses cost. The stations will collect insects, with a Malaise trap, and spores, with a cyclone sampler. The samples will be collected and analysed in the same way as for the regular participating Lifeplan stations.
The Lifeplan project at Röbäcksdalen will follow the crop rotation of one of the fields. A crop rotation is typically five years; one year with barley, one year with ley establishment undersown in barley and then three years of ley. Since Lifeplan will continue for five more years, chances are good that the collections at Röbäcksdalen will be made during all the different crop rotations. This system means the Lifeplan equipment will have to be removed from the field each time there is a harvest or a management practice taking place on the field.
If things go well, Röbäcksdalen hopes to continue to collect biodiversity samples even beyond the scope of the Lifeplan project. All data from this collection will be available on the SITES Data Portal, and additional information on the fields will be available through the SMURF data project- compiled data from the dairy barn’s 300 ha cultivated land.