Nationalpark Hohe Tauern: Protected Habitat for Flora and Fauna
With 1,856 km² (716 square miles) the Nationalpark Hohe Tauern is by far the largest nature reserve in the Alps. It extends over vast and ancient alpine landscapes such as glaciers, rock cliffs and grasslands as well as alpine pastures which have been carefully and painstakingly cultivated over the centuries.
The Hohe Tauern National Park was established in 1981 and is thus Austria’s first National Park. During the following years the reserve—comprising parts of the provinces of Carinthia, Salzburg and Tirol—has become the largest protected area of the Alps.
Hikers, climbers and trekkers will find outstanding conditions: well-marked trails and alpine climbing paths, alpine inns and mountain lodges. Innumerable routes invite you to discover the mountains of the Hohe Tauern and, right in the center of all this, our Enzianhütte in the Habach Valley.
Habitat for Rare Animals
On June 21, 2011 two young bearded vultures, named Emerald and Jacob, were released in the Habach Valley. For twenty-five years, there has been an active intraregional project of resettlement of these giants of the air, which were nearly eradicated around 120 years ago. Since the first release in 1986 in the Rauris-Kruml Valley, the reintroduction project of the bearded vulture into the Alps has developed into one of the most important conservation projects in Europe.
Since then, 170 young vultures born in captivity have been released. Since 1997, bearded vultures have once again been breeding in the wild in the Alps—and also in Austria since 2001. All told, 68 young birds have been born in the wild. The first successful breeding in Austria was carried out in 2010 in the Rauris-Kruml Valley.
And since June 21, 2011, two of these magnificent birds circle the sky over the Habach Valley: keep your eyes peeled at your next visit, and perhaps you, too, will catch sight of them…
These photos were us kindly provided by Andreas Happich (a lifelong Habach Valley resident) and “Bartgeier” Michi, (the guardian of the bearded vulture) of the Hohe Tauern National Park). We look forward to your next visit.