Aims

The main aim of Landscape Laboratories is to promote insect diversity and biomass through the cultivation of renewable resources and through usage of alternative cultivation systems in which renewable resources are cultivated in parallel and mixed with other crops in crop rotations. Thereby, FInAL aims to significantly contribute to the conservation or enhancement of biodiversity in agricultural areas and a promotion of ecosystem services. In the process, positive synergistic effects with integrated pest management (IPM) will be generated and investigated, while opposing effects are to be avoided.

FInAL aims to improve resource availability for insects, close resource gaps within the year, and connect currently isolated habitats (overwintering- , reproductive-, food – sites) by diversification of the agricultural land and improvement of habitat connectivity.

The central theme of Landscape Laboratories is to develop combinations of cultivation systems of renewable resources and other crops, in which insects and their functions in agroecosystems are in focus. At the same time, interactions with organisms and functions of other groups will be taken into consideration. This will be implemented in both agricultural and grassland dominated landscapes.

An increase of biomass, diversity and ecosystem services of insects has to follow guiding principles that are specific for each region. These guiding principles are compiled following a variety of criteria, which will be identified by FInAL-researchers and stakeholers.

Alongside Landscape Laboratories, FInAL makes use of test sites for conducting field experiments in which innovative cultivation methods are investigated, i.e. to identify impacts on insects under deliberately induced changes and transformations.

Further, FInAL aims to improve the multi-functionality of insect facilitating measures through optimized or alternative management. Within the Landscape Laboratories both known as well as novel measures and cultivation methods are to be tested and optimized and their transferability is to be shown.