The Maashorst is one of the larger nature reserves in the province of Noord-Brabant. Four counties and the State Forest Service manage the area. It consists mainly of dry pine-woodlands and heathlands. The pine-woodlands are gradually being transformed into more natural, deciduous forests. A central area of around 250 ha of agricultural land will be transformed into natural habitat the coming years. In the northern part two major roads cut through the area. Five years ago, two green bridges have been built for defragmentation.

Two years ago 12 Eurasian bison were released in a 300 ha enclosure, apparently feeling comfortable in their new home. The Maashorst is inhabited by many bird species, including raven (the first breeding pair in the province since many centuries) and red-backed shrike. More common birds are stonechat and woodlark.

The field trip will start with a presentation on the natural values of the Maashorst. After that we will split in two groups. One group will visit the enclosure, searching for the bison. This will be done by bike. The other group will visit the green bridges, also by bike. You will be informed about all details that relate to the planning, designing, constructing and monitoring of the overpasses. After lunch, the first group will visit the green bridges and the second group will go to the bison. After enjoying some refreshments we will be transferred by bus back to Eindhoven.

Time of departure:    9:15

Time of return:          17:00

Duration:                    7:45 h

Transportation by:     bus, bicycle

Capacity:                     50

Key words:                  green bridge, wildlife underpass, bison, habitat restoration

Organization:              Province Noord-Brabant, in collaboration with the State Forest Service.