Care of the forest

Šumava is inseparably linked with the forest. Even the name "Silva Gabreta" on ancient Greek maps associated with a forest. "Silva" in Latin means a forest and "Gabreta" is of Celtic origin and means a mountain range, which is where Šumava dominates. In Proto-Slavic, the word "Šumava" is derived from the word "šuma", which means a dense forest. Even the German and Anglo-Saxon names for Šumava have the same meaning ("Böhmerwald "or" Bohemian Forest").

Before human colonisation, the entire territory, with the exception of some rocky peaks, rock walls, cirques and central parts of peat bogs, used to be covered in forest vegetation. The forest still covers most of the territory (Šumava National Park consists of 80% of forest area) and the forest is therefore the basis of "natural" Šumava vegetation.

Economic activity in the Šumava forests has a long tradition. Despite the general belief that Šumava has relatively intact forests the disruption by human activities is actually very severe. The pressure from the gradual colonisation of the Šumava complex has been ongoing for more than 800 years! Initially, this only concerned the peripheral parts of Šumava, which were largely outside the National Park complex. These were preceded by Celtic influences more than 2,000 years ago, which today are difficult to identify.

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