13th Floodplain Ecology Workshop: Successful Networking and Ambitious Goals for Wetland Restoration in Europe

The Swiss Federal Institute for Forest, Snow and Landscape Research (WSL) in Birmensdorf, Zurich, hosted the 13th Floodplain Ecology Workshop from 13 – 15 March 2024. Researchers and practitioners were successfully networked: The 80 participants from Germany, Switzerland, Austria and France are divided into 40 people each – either working or studying at research institutions, and the other representatives of authorities, NGOs, engineering and environmental offices. 

In addition to two days of lectures and poster sessions, the programme also included excursions to the “Thurauen” near Zurich and to some floodplains in southern Switzerland. A total of 34 lectures from various subject areas and four keynote lectures on particularly relevant aspects were held as part of the programme. The speakers covered the fields of management and protection of floodplains and wetlands, floodplain vegetation, ecosystem services and floodplain fauna. Furthermore, new approaches to quantifying the state of floodplains, restoration and hydrological connectivity were presented and discussed. The results of long-term monitoring in floodplains and studies on floodplain dynamics were also explained by the presenters. 

In this context, Johanna Weidendorfer had the opportunity to present the Restore4Life Project and its ambition of paving the way for holistic wetland restoration in Europe in a German-speaking consortium.