Hay making structures in Slovakia
28.09.2017, by Bénédicte Gaillard
The entries are still in process, the e-atlas is still under development
Hay is grass, legumes, or other herbaceous plants that have been cut, dried, and stored for use as animal fodder, particularly for grazing animals such as cattle, horses, goats, and sheep.
Hay can be used as animal fodder when or where there is not enough pasture or rangeland on which to graze an animal, when grazing is unavailable due to weather (such as during the winter) or when lush pasture by itself is too rich for the health of the animal. It is also fed during times when an animal is unable to access pasture, such as when animals are kept in a stable or barn.
Specific geographical components - different types of haymaking structures in regions.
extensive farming, usually as a part of a mixed system
clasification of traditionally mowed meadows in terms of species composition and ecological requirements: 1. wet meadows, 2. Mesophile meadows, 3. dry meadows
Meadows in the past - abounded on the floodplains of major rivers and streams in mountain and foothill areas on less fertile soils or less accessible areas unsuitable for arable land.
Mountain meadows of 1200 m above see level - usually in mountain region with meadows and pasture traditions (heritage of Wallachian colonisation)
Present state of meadows - hay making structures preserved only in certain region
traditionally managed meadows preserved especially in mountainous and foothill areas up to 1100 m., unsuitable for recultivation to fields or intensified meadows during collectivization, on shallow soils, higher slope – unsuitable for new mechanism
wet meadows on floodplains in the lowlands and valleys have been preserved only as fragments - legislative protected areas, mostly kept within the management of nature and landscape ...
traditional meadows: occurence in the areas of dispersed settlement, orchards meadows, terraced landscapes, grassland-pastures landscapes, etc. ..
Management: according to the quality of the hay meadow – they are mown 1-2 times a year and occasionally grazed, or combination - 1x mowed, grazed.
it is a shrinking usually replaced by new modern technology, exception – region with extreme natural condition
Main treats: conversion to arable land, drainage, construction or abandonment.
Loft „senník“, stodôlka, šopka, štálik, koliba)
- farm building intended for storing hay.
- Most often located in the meadows - due to their remoteness from the villages of mountainous terrain and lack of roads that would allow transport of dry hay in the village (transported to the village by sled in winter)
- lack of storage facilities in the village and a fire hazard.
- Hayloft were generally one-room wooden building with a gabled roof with no ceiling.
- During the autumn, hayloft lodged shepherds
aesthetic value, inspiration for artists
folklore „travnice“, tradition maintenance
educational value (ethnological, biological, biodiversity information)
biological genepool, source of biodiversity