Review of three Biodiversity Days in the Minett UNESCO Biosphere
As Minett UNESCO Biosphere, we organised the third edition of the Biodiversity Days last week. After two years marked in part by sanitary measures, we were able to take full advantage of the Ellergronn nature reserve and its possibilities this time. Ellergronn, one of the core zones of our biosphere reserve, is one of the oldest nature reserves in the country and offers countless opportunities for outdoor activities.
11.05.: The business day
Thursday was the day for companies. Together with IMS Luxembourg, we invited employees from companies that are members of IMS. The participants were offered a workshop in which they were shown how to create a herbarium. Malika Palies from Sound Ecology led this workshop.
During the workshop, the participants learnt what a herbarium is. They were also told why it is important to create and maintain herbaria and how to proceed to create it properly.
Afterwards, they headed out into nature, i.e. into the forests and dry grasslands of the Ellergronn, to identify and collect plants. These were then compiled into a herbarium and each participant received his or her personal herbarium as a memento of their participation in our Biodiversity Days.
© Minett UNESCO Biosphere
12.05.: The school day
In the long tradition of workshops that PRO-SUD has been organising since 2008 for school classes, classes from the member municipalities of the inter-municipal syndicate that manages the Minett UNESCO biosphere visited us on Friday.
Nine classes from the municipalities of Bettembourg, Differdange, Dudelange, Esch, Käerjeng, Kayl, Mondercange, Pétange and Sanem came to the Ellergronn and were able to participate in seven different workshops and thus discover the natural and industrial heritage of the Minett.
The “Waldbaden” workshop, organised by the “Haus vun der Natur“, aimed to allow the children to discover the forest in all its facets. The “Musée Ferrum” introduced the children to archaeology and explained to them why many fossils can be found in the Minett region. In the workshop of the animal park Escher Déierepark, the pupils were able to pass their “rodent permit” and at the stand of the “naturmusée“, the amphibians living in the wetlands of the Minett UNESCO Biosphere played the main role.
The important role of bees as pollinators in the cycle of nature was the subject of the first workshop organised by the Nature and Forest Agency (ANF), while the second ANF workshop focused on the mines of the region and their current importance for the survival of bats. Finally, it was also explained to schoolchildren from the region why horses can be very useful for work in the forest. That is why two Ardennes horses from the “Robbesscheier” in Munshausen made the long journey to Ellergronn.
© Minett UNESCO Biosphere
13.05.: Den Dag an der Natur an um Minett Trail
Families were the centre of attention on Saturday. For the 19th time already, the joint “Day in Nature” of the City of Esch and the ANF Nature Administration took place, organized with the participation of the Minett UNESCO Biosphere since 2021. This year, Visit Minett, the regional tourism office, was a new co-organiser.
The programme included numerous workshops for adults and children, providing an opportunity to learn more about nature and handicrafts. There were demonstrations of the different works done in the forest, information stands and creative workshops with the “Grénge Mann” and the “Aqua-Wass”. Guided walks, food and drink booths and musical entertainment by various bands that played throughout the day at the Ellergronn Nature Conservation Centre’s event site topped off the day’s activities.
A new addition to this year’s event was a local market with eleven producers from the region offering and selling their fresh produce. Fresh fruit and vegetables as well as eggs, oils and drinks were on offer here.
Inauguration of the Minett Trail
This day’s highlight was most certainly the inauguration of the Minett Trail and the Kabaischen “Pump It Up” of the City of Esch. The idea of creating a 90-kilometre trail through the eleven municipalities of the Minett UNESCO Biosphere originated with the southern region’s candidacy for admission to UNESCO’s Man and the Biosphere programme. Visit Minett subsequently analysed existing trails and linked them together to create a premium trail that passes through the eleven municipalities, 8 nature reserves, 7 towns and 6 villages of the South.
Speaking at the official inauguration of the Minett Trail, the Minister of Tourism, Lex Delles, and the Visit Minett President, Henri Haine, stressed the importance of this new infrastructure for the development of sustainable tourism in the south of Luxembourg and emphasised that the 11 Kabaisercher that have been created along the Minett Trail can help to put the Minett region on the tourist map of Luxembourg.
At the inauguration of the “Pump It Up” Kabaischen, Kabaischen of the City of Esch, the Mayor of Esch and President of the PRO-SUD community syndicate, Georges Mischo, emphasised that the Minett UNESCO Biosphere is an important asset for the future positioning of the southern region and once again praised the cooperation of the eleven southern municipalities in the implementation of the Minett Trail project and the completion of its Kabaischer.