LIFE13 NAT/SI/000314

Slovenia Forest Service

Full name: Slovenia Forest Service
Slovenia Forest Service – Kočevje regional unit
Abbreviation: SFS


Slovenia Forest Service

Slovenia belongs to the most forested countries in Europe. 1,169,196 ha of forests cover more than a half of its territory (forestation amounts to 57.7 %). Most Slovenian forests are located within the area of beech, fir-beech and beech-oak sites (70 %), which have a relatively high production capacity.

The Slovenia Forest Service is a public institution, established by the Republic of Slovenia (The Act on Forests, 1993), which performs public forestry service in all Slovenian forests, irrespective of their ownership structure. At the state level it is organized with its central unit in Ljubljana, at the regional level in 14 regional units, and at the local level it has 93 local units and 408 forest districts. The Slovenia Forest Service also comprises 10 hunting reserves with a special purpose related to the sustainable management of wild animals, protection of rare and endangered animal species and performs the activities of hunting tourism. The bodies of the Slovenia Forest Service are its council, director, and experts council. The Slovenia Forest Service employs 813 staff, of which 688 are forestry experts. The public forestry service is nearly entirely funded from the budget of the Republic of Slovenia whereas hunting reserves with a special purpose are mostly self-financed. It does not itself perform any felling, extraction, transport and selling of wood, nor forest trade.

Main tasks and activities of the Slovenia Forest Service

  • collecting data on the state and development of forests and keeping databases;
  • elaboration of regional hunting management plans;
  • elaboration of silvicultural plans and plans for forest fire protection;
  • determination of necessary silvicultural and protection work in forests;
  • providing seedlings and seeds of forest trees for forest regeneration;
  • co-operation in open-space planning;
  • elaborating and keeping information system for forest roads;
  • directing and supervising construction and maintenance of forest roads;
  • informing the public about the importance of forests and nature preservation;
  • management and popularization of forest educational, tourist and other theme trails;

Slovenia Forest Service, the Kočevje Regional unit

The Kočevje regional unit lies in the southern Slovenia and covers the area between Turjak in the north and river Kolpa in the south. The total surface area is measured to 117,997 hectares with forests covering 91,572 hectares (78.5%).
For organizational purposes the regional unit is divided into 6 local units with 34 districts.
State hunting reserves with the special purpose (SHRSP) are also a part in the structure of the Slovenia Forest Service (SFS). The Kočevje regional unit consists of SHRSP Medved, SHRSP Snežnik Kočevska Reka and SHRSP Žitna gora.
The Kočevje regional unit employs 74 people, including 52 forestry experts and 19 employees in the state hunting reserves with the special purpose (SHRSP).

Mission statement – Slovenia Forest Service

Preservation and close-to-nature development of Slovenian forests and all of their functions for their sustainable and good management and use as well as the nature conservation in forest area for the benefit of present and future generations.

  • A.2: Recording the starting position of the target species qualification and qualification habitat type and baseline socio-economic analysis of Natura 2000 sites Kočevsko;
  • B.1: Land lease for the implementation of measures in private forests;
  • C.2: Improvement of habitat conditions and population density of three-toed woodpecker and the white-backed woodpecker;
  • C.3: Measures to improve habitat and population of capercaillie and hazel grouse;
  • C.4: Improvement of habitat and population of white-tailed eagle;
  • D.1: Measuring the effects of field operations by monitoring status of target species and habitats; Action D.2: Assessment of socio-economic effects of the project actions and assessment of the target ecosystems.

Extensive data bases on the forest status and development representing a basis for the preparation of a 10-year forest management plan for individual forest management units will be used to conduct an expert analysis of situation in the field of forestry and hunting in the whole project area – the Natura 2000 site Kočevsko.

On the basis of the conducted records (monitoring) of individual target species the baseline of target classification species will be established. The data obtained will be upgraded with the study and analysis of habitat conditions and the data from previous monitoring and information of the foresters who due to their line of work know the forest area best. This data will be a baseline for the preparation of implementation plans for concrete field actions.
Concrete nature conservation actions and campaigns are the most important and at the same the most comprehensive and demanding part of the project. With implementing these actions, measures and know-how in the system of forest management planning we will significantly contribute to the improvement of living and feeding conditions for the Eurasian three-toed woodpecker, White-backed woodpecker, Western capercaillie, Hazel grouse and the White-tailed eagle with its habitat in the vicinity of the Reško Lake.

By exchanging information with forest owners in the foreseen areas for the protection of target species we will try to find answers and lease 20 ha of private forests (for 20 years) and 300 habitat trees (mainly beech and fir trees with at least 50 cm in diameter) and thus also continue the management for species in private forests.

The acquired knowledge and experience from the organising one of the largest cleaning campaigns in Slovenia ‘Let’s clean Kočevska’ as well as field information will help us contribute to the planning, preparation and execution of different actions related to the cleaning of caves, and prevent their further pollution.
We will make an effort, use our knowledge and experience during the project implementation to form a cross-sectorial network of key stakeholders (Forum for Kočevsko) who will be constantly updated with the project contents throughout the project and participate in the drawing up of project solutions and search for new project and development opportunities of the Kočevsko sub-region in the long-term.

The project is designed as a demonstration project by using various approaches, a series of concrete measures and with an objective that project solutions and examples of good practice are transferred to other stakeholders and areas. The preparation of numerous education courses for employees of the Slovenia Forest Service, the Kočevje and Novo Mesto Regional Unit, employees of the contractors, employed hunters at the Medved special purpose hunting district and beyond, the implementation of field days with the knowledge and experience transfer from the so called Management for species, the implementation of concrete nature conservations campaigns for the species and their monitoring in the system of forest management planning will improve the situation of diverse forests in the Nature 2000 site Kočevsko in the long-term.

  • Tina Kotnik,
  • Zoran Bitorajc,
  • mag. Mirko Perušek,
  • Simon Peteržinek
  • dr. Irena Bertoncelj with a team of colleagues Slovenian Forest Service (CU, RU Kočevje and RU Novo mesto).

We offer our best efforts, professional and development-oriented work and hope that it will contribute to the success of the project and provide results that will serve as guidelines in our future work.

Project Coordinator: Tina Kotnik

T: +386 41 657 393

Expert assistant, coordinator: mag.Mirko Perušek

T: +386 41 657 392

Slovenia Forest Service, Central unit

Večna pot 2, 1001 Ljubljana
T: + 386 1/470-00-50
F: + 386 1/423-53-61

Slovenia Forest Service, the Kočevje Regional unit

Rožna ulica 39, 1330 Kočevje
T: + 386 1/ 89-50-400
F: + 386 1/89-55-275

Slovenia Forest Service, the  Novo mesto Regional unit

Gubčeva 15, 8000 Novo mesto
T: + 386 7/ 39-42-550
F: + 386 7/39-42-560