Hohenzieritz/Schwerin (dpa/mv) – The Müritz National Park will have a new manager from April. His name is Ulf Zimmermann, he is 51 years old and a forest scientist, as announced by the Schwerin Ministry of the Environment on Thursday. Zimmermann was most recently the head of the Saxon Switzerland National Park and is the successor to Ulrich Meßner, whom department head Till Backhaus (SPD) retired last year after 27 years in office in Hohenzieritz. The new national park director comes from Siegen in North Rhine-Westphalia and was previously also a consultant in the Lower Oder Valley National Park in Brandenburg.

The Müritz National Park emerged in 1990 from several GDR state hunting areas in the Mecklenburg Lake District that were closed to the population, against which many citizens had protested in the fall of 1989. According to its own statements, it is the largest forest national park in Germany.

Many white-tailed eagles and ospreys, cranes and bitterns breed in the two sub-areas on the east bank of the Müritz and Serrahn, and a number of rare plant species grow there. The 268-hectare beech forest near Serrahn has also been protected as a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2011.