For many managers of nature sites around Europe, the concept of ecosystem services is relatively new and barely put in practice; or at least not consciously. During a full day seminar on ‘ecosystems at your service’ as part of our annual member’s meeting, the participants learned about ecosystem services and how this can help in increasing support for their management and protection activities. For many it was an eye opener, making them realize that their sites and well-managed ecosystems have more to offer to society than they think.

The Eurosite Annual Meeting 2016, held in Serres, Greece, from 8 until 10 November was attended by some 50 participants from all over Europe, and hosted by the Greek Eurosite member KOMATH – Hunting Federation of Macedonia and Thrace.

The powerpoint presentations and brief summaries of the keynotes during the seminar at day 1 of the Annual Meeting are available below.

Photo: Eurosite Annual Meeting 2016 participants, © Kazimierz Rabski


Seminar “Ecosystems at your service: how to incorporate ecosystem services into practical site management
Tuesday 8 November

Presentation ‘Operationalisation of natural capital and ecosystem services – from concepts to real-world application‘ by Ben Delbaere, ECNC-European Centre for Nature Conservation

Presentation ‘Views on nature: the pros and cons of ecosystem services‘ by Irene Bouwma, Alterra

Presentation ‘Peatland conservation and the UK Peatland Code’ by Paul Leadbitter, The North Pennines AONB Partnership

Presentation ‘Rice paddies and avifauna: major ecosystem service providers in the Axios Delta Protected Area‘ by Eva Katrana, Axios Loudias Aliakmonas Management Authority

Presentation ‘Ecosystem services and their interaction with hunting activity in Greece‘ by Konstantinos G. Papaspyropoulos, Hunting Federation of Macedonia and Thrace

Presentation ‘Practical application of ecosystem services in Belgium‘ by Anke Geeraerts, Natuurpunt

Presentation ‘The Dutch Natura 2000 network: benefits for society’ by Esther Moens, Natuurmonumenten

Workshop 1: Towards a market system for nature credits?
This workshop addressed the possibilities of establishing a market system for (protected) nature area’s in Europe, considering the existing context, the motivations and possible objectives and organisational structure involved.

Workshop 2: Ecosystem services – how to trace and involve the relevant stakeholders
This workshop explored the questions of how to increase beneficiaries’ involvement in and commitment towards ecosystem services.

Workshop 3: Tools and assessments of ecosystem services
This interactive workshop aimed to review the considerations site managers need to make before choosing a model or tool for their ecosystem services assessment.