The Regional Environmental Centre for the Caucasus (RECC) together with the international experts from E.C.O. institute and local stakeholders visited Shenako community to monitor the results of pilot project on smart agriculture and sustainable pasture management. The pilot project is being implemented via local partner – Association of Tusheti Protected Areas in the frame of the Global Environment Facility (GEF)/United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) project “Applying Landscape and sustainable Land Management (L-SLM) for mitigating land degradation and contributing to poverty reduction in rural areas” via local subcontractor Friends’.
The pilot project supports prevention of overgrazing and introduction of smart agricultural practices and sustainable land management in the area of Shenako village.
Preventive measures to avoid overgrazing includes: removing thistles from pastures, installing the el-fence on 6 ha of pasture land for the beginning to apply the rotation grassing system and plant the Sainfoin to increase plant leaf areas, development of village pasture management plan and training of locals on pasture monitoring. To provide additional fodder by improved hay management, REC Caucasus together with Caritas is providing the hay press machinery to the village that will fasten cutting the hay in time and maintain the productivity.
The pilot project also supports the intervention to support introduction of smart agricultural practice that sustainably increases productivity and enhances resilience (adaptation). In particular, crop and fruit rotation system testing in Shenako vilage will be implemented on 20 ha of agricultural land. Barley will be seeded on potatoes fields in February 2019 to obtain fertility to the soil. The result will ensure vegetation recovery and soil erosion prevention, as well as increase milk productivity by increased nutrition of cows.