Unit 3: Evolution and Sustaining Biodiversity


Discussion assignment

Your posts should cover the questions below in full, and be at least 300 words long. Then reply to and peer-review at least three other posts by next Wednesday 11:59PM UoPeople Time, and rate the posts and replies.

This week I would like for you to find and review a project, organization or park related to protecting biodiversity. Preferably one that is near where you live. This could be a local group or non-profit organization that works to protect biodiversity. It could be a park, a natural reserve, or a conservation area. Or, it could be something else that is related.

Study the information you have found, then answer the following questions:

I chose the biosphere reserve Berchtesgadener Land.
The main link to this reserve is:


2. Where is it located?!

The biodiversity reserve is located in the county “Berchtesgaden”, Bavaria, Germany.

Nationalpark Berchtesgaden

Figure 1: The national park in Bavaria with its different zones (Nationalparkverwaltung Berchtesgaden, 2016).

3. What is its mission?

Its mission is the protection of the environment, building of environment and public relations, research, a place of relaxing for the public and environmental education.

Another big part of this national park is the zoning. This means the park administration tries to find a compromise between the biodiversity interests and public interests (“Steckbrief des Nationalparks Berchtesgaden”, 2016).

The main purpose of the national park is the protection of animals and plants of the 210 square kilometers of big nature diversity.

A big part of the biosphere reserve is left without human interactions to increase the natural growth of plants and animals without external influences.

The area is diverted into different zones.

There is a zone where only small interactions with the environment are done, the “care zone”. In this zone, traditional using like alm farming, shipping business, and fishing is allowed around the Königssee in the biodiversity reservation.

In this care zone, the park administration supports the cultivation of plants and trees (“Steckbrief des Nationalparks Berchtesgaden”, 2016).

Researchers and administrative personnel from the government, universities, and individuals use the biosphere reserve for a better understanding of nature and animals. They use the uniqueness of nature in this reserve for developing better protection of the environment and the individuals living in this zone.

The findings from Berchtesgaden are used all over the world to improve the protection and understanding of nature.

  1. In what ways could You participate in this project/reserve/organization you are reviewing?

I should respect the nature on a visit and not deposit any garbage, not leave the ways, do not annoy and disturb any animals and not pick up any of the plants there.


Nationalparkverwaltung Berchtesgaden,. (2016). UNESCO Biosphärenregion Berchtesgadener Land. Retrieved from http://www.berchtesgadener-land.com/cdn/uploads/uneso-biosphaerenregion-berchtesgadener-land.png

Steckbrief des Nationalparks Berchtesgaden. (2016). Nationalpark-berchtesgaden.de. Retrieved 25 November 2016, from http://www.nationalpark-berchtesgaden.de/nationalpark/steckbrief/index.htm#inline_content_naturschutz

Steckbrief des Nationalparks Berchtesgaden. (2016). Nationalpark-berchtesgaden.de. Retrieved 25 November 2016, from http://www.nationalpark-berchtesgaden.de/nationalpark/steckbrief/index.htm

(445 words)

Learning Journal Unit 3

1. Of the different kinds of ecosystem services you learned about, discuss two that are important in your local area, village, forests and/or nation.

Next to my town is a dam which stores water. This sea is since 2014, mainly used for flood protection and tourism. Before opening for tourism,  it was mainly used for the production of drinking water and flood protection. The sea was connected to another, as part of a drinking water production system.

This sea offering many important services, like fishes which could be captured, cultural (tourism),  water and biodiversity around the sea and aquaculture.

Our forests offer also much ecosystem service, they have used also for climate regulation, flood protection, and flora and fauna.

2. How are these services endangered and what economic costs to society do you foresee with their loss?

A few years before 2014,  our sea was connected to another sea, located in a town next to us. The system was connected with an outflow. But this outflow has stopped because the water can no more use as drinking water now.

I attached a picture for a better understanding. The “Talsperre Zeulenroda” is in my hometown which was connected to the “Weidatalsperre” until 2014. Our water has been used for the “Weidatalsperre” in the case that the water in this dam is below a specific level. They producing drinking water from the “Weidatalsperre”.

But they disconnected the “Talsperre Zeulenroda” in the year 2014 from the drinking water system because they want to use it for tourism and also the water quality was too bad. The heavy tourism is also endangering and disturbing the ecosystem in and around the sea.

The disconnecting results in a stop of flow and the water standstill.

Also, farmers still dropping their waste into the water.

Bildergebnis für vorsperre zeulenroda

(PSV Merkendorf e. V., 2016)

The economic costs are very high. The aquaculture in this sea is endangered. As earlier explained the algae bloom is also a problem. The fishes in the water can’t breathe.

Another problem is the heavy growth of wild boars in our forests.

The heavy exploding wild boar population is a problem for the flora and fauna of the forest which may become disturbed. The forests don’t have enough food for this large population, so the wild boars are expanding their food search activity to human settled areas and other regions.

3. What is one action that people could take to help protect these services?

The people should take care of their actions around the sea and the influences of them to the agriculture of the sea. Like bathing and dropping waste should be done carefully to avoid the influence of the ecosystem.

One reason for the growing wild boar population is the lack of natural enemies. In our region are no bears or wolves – only humans which hunt the boars. Hunting is the simplest thing the people do at the moment to take influence about this.

The hunters are trying to decrease the exploding population to stabilize the ecosystem and protect the ecosystem services which are endangered.

But they also can build fences to protect the agriculture land or implement substances against wild boars for scaring them off.

4. One or two sentences or your own personal reflection on something you learned this week.

I learned again a lot about our biodiversity habitats and our ecosystem, next to the basics of evolution and how our ecosystem works.


PSV Merkendorf e. V.,  (2016). Landkreis Greiz, Talsperre Weida und Zeulenroda. Retrieved from http://psv-merkendorf.de/index_htm_files/1110.jpg

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