At the time of the project completion the results were:accurate estimation of population size,preparing documentation for new nest protection zones; testing accuracy of the nest zone definition;testing efficiency of artificial nest sites; reliable inventory of Roller’s was completed: 122 - 133 breeding pairs were recorded,documentation of 70 new nest protection zones were prepared and submitted to relevant state authorities; changes of land owners’ attitude;formulating and consolidating the “Roller working group” in Poland,
Since the SGP GEF-funded project’s completion in 1998, the members of the “Roller working group” kept monitoring (although on much smaller and difficult to estimate scale and irregularly) the areas inhabited by Rollers. As it was proved by years-long experience of the Eagle Protection Committee, such visit to the nesting places of endangered species (preferably annual) and conversations with land owners are very important measure helping to keep the land owner’s interest in protecting the given species’ nesting site.
Bird conservation activists from southern Poland, basing on the outputs of the MTOF project, currently started similar Roller conservation scheme in the southernmost part of the Polish Roller’s range. This Roller’s population was not covered by MTOF’s project scope in 1997-98.
The very important element of MTOF’s project design: launching conservation activities on the country scale, which integrates scattered conservation activists, gradually became in Poland more of a tradition than exception.The MTOF’s project on Roller did not intend to change immediately the law concerning Roller’s conservation. Yet, the outcome of the project, well known in nature conservationists’ circles, resulted in 2004 with satisfactory modification of law concerning Rollers’ nest protecting zones. During the project’s running time, there were not available any financial mechanisms supporting conservation of biodiversity related to traditional farming practices. But after Poland’s EU accession in 2004, such possibilities exists within agri-environmental schemes’ payments. These are EU payments for farmers for maintaining these types of agricultural practices, which are crucial for maintaining high nature values of semi-natural habitats, such as extensively grazed pasture. Experts working on preparing Polish version of EU agri-environmental schemes consider introducing a special package targeting at Roller conservation. This package would allow to maintain or restore land use pattern providing attractive foraging ground for Roller and other species with similar habitat requirements.
Although the MTOF’s project “Active conservation of Roller in Poland” did not bring immediate results in the Rollers decline, it gave solid conceptual basis for the species future conservation. The project’s findings can be very helpful in developing financial incentives mitigating some of the most important threats to this species.