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The open farmland vistas play an essential role in the valley landscape. Photo Aaro Toivio.

Farmlands are agricultural land used for various types of cultivation. Farmlands in the Vaasa region can be found in lush valleys where grain is usually grown. Edges of ditches significantly increase biodiversity in farmlands and are more varied than meadowlands. Many species of meadowland plants, however, are found alongside the edges of ditches as traditional meadowlands become increasingly scarce. Biodiversity increases when farmlands are left in fallow, i.e. uncultivated for one season. Insect pollinators thrive in farmland environments and in turn attract insect-eating birds such as skylark, northern lapwing, Eurasian curlew, whinchat and ortolan bunting. Many birds also feed on worms, spiders and plant material in the fields and can be found nesting on the ground.

Farmland area in Vaasa totals about 2000 ha. Höstves, Böle and Risö all have large farmland areas. The largest continuous farmland area is Söderfjärden where the vast, open landscape can be admired from no less than two observation towers. Söderfjärden is a particularly popular destination for excursions during September, as masses of cranes use it as staging area during autumn migration. From the observation tower on Öjberget it is possible to view the area from a bird’s eye perspective, looking out over Söderfjärden’s not only round but also bowl-like shape.