WELCOME TO THE TISZATÁJ
The Tiszatáj (Tisa-landscape) Environmental and Nature Conservation Public Foundation was founded by the Hungarian Ornithological and Nature Conservation Association (the Hungarian partner organization of BirdLife International) and the Municipality of Tiszadob Townshipin 1995.
The mission of the Public Foundation laid down in its founding documentis:
"to assist, organize and implement the tasks related to the exploration, protection and dissemination of the natural values of the Tisza Valley and the historically connected areas, such as the Hungarian Northern Mountainregion, as well as the organization of a wide range of activities necessary to create a healthy human environment."
1. Nature conservation
The Public Foundation carries out conservation focused management of wetlands, lowland and mountain grasslands, forests, and arable fields. Most of this land is in its ownership, a smaller proportion is rented. Part of its territory was rented out to other nature conservation organizations and local farmers interested in landscape management.Its main landscape conservation activity is the management of lowland grasslands, especially floodplain grasslands, grazed bytraditional breeds characteristic for the Pannonian biogeographical region.
On areas managed directly by the Public Foundation, our goal is to develop and publicise best practice management methods as an"agri-environmental model farm”.Our approach is twofold: on one hand, we experiment and develop methods that best serve the protection of natural values, on the other hand, we present these procedures to those who are interested in landscape friendly management. We disseminate our results to many levels including farmer communities in the area as well as to political and professional decision-makers, e.g. we make them accessible to developers of agri-environmental management programs.
3. Ecotourism, visitor centre
The Public Foundation operates a visitor centre and a nature trail as part of the model farm in the heart of the Kesznyéteni Landscape Protection Area. The high biodiversity and the presence of indigenous animal species are a result of our landscape conservation activities, and provides an opportunity to present natural values and nature-friendly farming methods to tourists. Most of the visitors are young students, families (often 3 generations together) and farmers interested in our landscape management practices. The annual number of visitors exceeds a thousand people.
4. Regional outreach
The public foundation is a member of the network established by 5 public foundations with a similar profile in 2011. The territories of the members of the network cover many natural habitat types in Hungary. By sharing the professional knowledge gathered through cooperation, we help the management and nature conservation work of similar organizations in Hungary and beyond.
Since its inception, the Tiszatáj Public Foundation has been closely cooperating with the region's local governments, local government associations, LEADER associations, farmer organizations, and entrepreneurs. The cooperation covers theoretical and practical nature conservation and agricultural topics.
Our Public Foundation contributed to drawing up the regional development plans of the Tiszatér and Dél-Borsod regional association, in the topics of biodiversity conservation, landscape management and agriculture. As a member of the Dél-Borsod Leader Association, and as a member of theTiszatér Leader Association, it maintains an extensive and operational network with the local population, entrepreneurs, and municipalities.
We organize thematic and open days and conferences for the residents of the region.
We participate in the work of the National Chamber of Agriculture by providing advisory in the field of nature conservation and landscape management. The president of the Foundation as a representative in the Chamber participates in the working group ongrassland management.
Within the framework of art inspired by nature, we organize photo, painting and folk-art exhibitions at the municipalities of the wider region.
We provide outdoor and indoor training and education on nature conservation and landscape management. We welcome groups from kindergartens up to higher education with programs tailored tothese age group.
We are also in contact with several higher education institutions, and most importantly, the Public Foundation is an outsourced department of the University of Debrecen, thus university students come to us to learn, practice, carry out scientific research and writing up their thesis.
We organize a multi-round environmental and traditional farming knowledge quiz series called "SpringWatch" for elementary school students every year since 2007.
The Public Foundation also supports professionally and financiallythe international Nature Conservation and Ornithology Camp, which has been held for more than 40 years with hundreds of participants since.
The Tiszatáj Public Foundation also makes efforts to raise awareness on the connection of farming and nature conservation by its professional and community programs.
1. Professional Conferences
We organize a yearly conference, on current topics of nature conservation and landscape management with the involvement of renowned speakers from and outside Hungary. The invitees are civil and professional nature conservationists, environmentalists, farmers, municipality representatives, local politicians and residents.
2. Thematic day
Every year, we organize a thematic day, on which we draw attention to the protection of a group of animals, such as bats, swallows, amphibians and, in 2022, the European bee-eater. This year in a joint action with the Hungarian Ornithological and Nature Conservation Association, we restored the sand wall that gave place to the breeding cavities in the sand mine owned by the Public Foundation.
3. Spring Cleaning and Family Day
To celebrate Earth Day, as well as to revive folk traditions, we organize a one-day program every year to strengthen our community relations. We welcome everyone who would like to spend a few hours out in nature or even to participate in a little community work around our Visitor Centre.
4. Cooking Competition of Traditional Herder Dishes
We have been organizing this event to nurture the pastoral traditions associated with the lowlands and wetlands of the Tisza Valley. Our aim is to revive, re-introduce and pass on the almost forgotten traditional shepherd meal recipes and cooking methods to the next generations within the framework of a cooking competition.