Welcome to the CWR In Situ Strategy Helpdesk

The CWR In Situ Strategy Helpdesk is a guide and information facility for national programmes, research institutes, NGOs, protected area managers or individuals involved in the development of a crop wild relative (CWR) in situ conservation strategy. There are three main components of this facility:

  1. A step-wise methodology for the identification of genetic reserve sites for a target crop gene pool.
  2. A step-wise methodology for the identification of genetic reserve sites for a national CWR flora.
  3. A list of data sources that can be consulted to aid the development of a CWR in situ conservation strategy.

Background

This helpdesk facility was set up and developed in the context of the AEGRO project, which aims to promote CWR and landrace conservation strategies within the EU member states, as components of an integrated EU strategy.

The specific objectives of the project can be found here.

The Helpdesk was initially established to assist the project partners in meeting objectives 1, 2 and 4:

  • Development of in situ management work plans for CWR and LR conservation.
  • Recommendation of sites suited to the establishment of genetic reserves for selected model crops (Avena, Beta, Brassica and Prunus).
  • Development of procedures required to establish multi-CWR-species sites to allow maximum use of the recommended sites.

The 'step-wise methodology for the identification of genetic reserve sites for a target crop gene pool' has been applied and tested within the AEGRO project for four model crop gene pools: Avena, Beta, Brassica and Prunus. The methodology is now provided as a facility for public use to assist in further development of a CWR in situ conservation strategy for Europe. As the methodology is applicable to any crop gene pool, it can also be used to develop in situ CWR conservation strategies for crop gene pools within any region of the world, or globally. In fact, the methodology largely builds on a global CWR in situ conservation strategy developed for 14 global priority crop gene pools (see Maxted and Kell, 2009).

The 'step-wise methodology for the identification of genetic reserve sites for a national CWR flora' has been applied and tested in a number of countries, including the United Kingdom, Ireland, Portugal and Switzerland, independently of the AEGRO project. While it is not within the scope of the AEGRO project to develop national CWR conservation strategies at floristic level (i.e., the whole national CWR flora), lessons learned from the development of in situ conservation strategies for each of the case study taxa at national as well as European level have been used to inform further development of the national strategy protocol. The national strategy methodology has been added to the Helpdesk to assist countries in meeting their national obligations to conserve their CWR flora, as well as to contribute further to a CWR in situ conservation strategy for Europe.

Using the Helpdesk

The Helpdesk has been designed to be as user-friendly as possible to facilitate easy access to the information needed to develop CWR in situ conservation strategies.

You can access the information from three main pages:

  1. Crop gene pool methodology
  2. National CWR flora methodology
  3. Data sources

Follow one of the links above to access the information you need.

Helpdesk references