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Bandeau Life+ Milouv
Number one  |  Thursday, November 27 2014

From the editor

This is the very first edition of the LIFE+ MIL’OUV newsletter! It is intended to be the link between you, the readers, and us! Please feel free to pass it on to anyone who might be interested in the topic and ask them to add their name to the mailing list. Any questions or comments are also welcome.  

A key figure


This is the number of farmers who will be given support for eco-pastoral management of their open habitats throughout the project. 

Milouv? You said MILOUV?



MILOUV is the abbreviation of “MILieux OUVerts”, (“Open Habitats” in English). This heading covers the Mediterranean open pastoral habitats: grasslands, scrublands, limestone plateaux, heath land, etc. These habitats are great reservoirs of biodiversity: they are host to a great many heritage species of fauna and flora. Almost one in two of the natural habitats and over 30% of the bird species that have been recorded as being of special interest at the European level can be found here. The area of brush-covered land in open habitats has increased by 6.5 million hectares in France since 1970. The closure of habitats is largely linked to the decline in agro-pastoral activity.  


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What is agro-pastoralism?

Herds of cows and horses, flocks of sheep and goats all graze in pastoral habitats, shaping them over centuries. For the breeders who manage the herds they are an important source of food that is not always optimized sufficiently. Yet the best tool for managing these natural habitats, together with appropriate grazing techniques, is the tooth of an animal.  

Conservation of these areas is a specific goal in order to ensure their future. However there are many unknown factors: developments in agricultural policies, consumer trends, increasing environmental expectations, the vagaries of the weather, etc. To adapt better to these changes, the methods, guidelines and references used so far with regard to agro-pastoralism and the environment need to evolve. The challenge is to support the pastoral community and promote grazing practices that permit habitat conservation and also maintain the viability of the farm. It is also essential to disseminate information about these practices and to support their implementation so that they are understood and used correctly.


  • July 2014: Start of research in the field. 130 breeders will be concerned with the aim of improving understanding of grazing practices and management of these areas (which animals, during which period, on which kind of vegetation, etc.) and learning about their state of conservation. Are you a breeder and do you wish to take part in the programme? Please complete the questionnaire  
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