Different measures are necessary to achieve the goals of the national park - even if the actual goal is to leave nature to its own devices.
The main tasks of the management are:
1. visitor guidance:
well signposted and safely walkable paths are the best measure for visitor guidance: here you can experience the sensitive nature without disturbing it.
In addition, the national park with its highly attractive landscape scenery offers, apart from the contemplative "nature experience", a variety of possibilities for a constantly growing number of other sport and leisure activities and tourist uses:
Rock climbing, ski touring, snowshoeing, trail running, paragliding, caving, geocaching, mountain biking, time-lapse star and drone photography, highlining, and and and
Some of these uses are prohibited in the national park: e.g. taking off and landing with aircraft, i.e. also drones, paragliding and base jumps, or camping. Others are restricted: e.g. biking only on trails approved for that purpose. However, most of them are so new that they could not even be considered in the legal bases.
All these uses represent a conflict potential with the priority nature conservation, which is constantly increasing due to the enormously rapid technical development: new development such as fat bikes combined with e-bikes allow riding on snow, modern LED lamps allow sports even in the dark. The use of GPS for orientation via the Internet with the cell phone always and everywhere makes the "signposting" ineffective, because everyone - even those unfamiliar with the area - can find and walk on any path, no matter how small. In addition, triggered by the Internet, new behavior patterns develop unpredictably and rapidly become mass phenomena: e.g., seeking out special places to post spectacular pictures from there.
All this requires constant efforts to continuously develop visitor management for the protection of nature together with stakeholders (tourism, alpine associations, mountain rescue, nature conservation associations, municipalities...).
2. forest development and game population regulation:
The forests in today's national park were subject to intensive use in the past
- as a supplier of firewood for the boiling of brine for salt production
- as a princely and later royal court hunting ground through fencing and year-round feeding of game.
Both led to a massive promotion of spruce. The natural tree species of the mixed mountain forest zone (beech, fir, maple, etc.) had largely disappeared and must now be re-established to the extent that they can participate in natural forest development again under their own steam. For this reason, fir trees in particular are still being planted. Since the "large predators" continue to be absent, the game density must also be regulated to a level that will contain the game browsing accordingly.
A particular problem here is red deer - our only "large herbivore": under natural conditions, the animals would leave the high mountains in winter and migrate along the rivers to the floodplain landscapes. These migrations have been interrupted for many generations by intensive use in the valley areas and the destruction of the floodplain forests - since the farm hunting days the entire area was even fenced off. So that these traditions are extinct and since then the animals "unnaturally" stay in the area and have to be fed there.
3. bark beetle management
The bark beetle is a natural element of the forests in the National Park. It contributes greatly to biodiversity by creating gaps in the natural mountain forest. That is why it is allowed to operate freely in the majority of the national park.
However, it poses a potential threat to the immediately adjacent commercial forests. For this reason, it is consistently controlled in a zone around 500 m deep along the northern edge of the national park within the maintenance zone: specially trained experts continuously monitor this area for infested trees. These are then quickly felled and mechanically treated so that the brood can no longer hatch. This effectively prevents the beetle from jumping over into the commercial forests. The dead wood preferably remains in the forest.
4. alpine farming
Alpine pasture farming has a very long tradition as a form of culture: in the Berchtesgadener Land, historical findings indicate that it dates back to Roman times. Since then, a cultural landscape has developed whose high biodiversity is an essential part of the protected assets of the national park. The areas are cultivated by farmers from the valley basin on the basis of late medieval authorizations.