Berlin (dpa) - The currently mild temperatures can have a negative impact on plants in Germany. That's what Justus Meißner from the Nature Conservation Foundation says.

«Species that are adapted to cold winters actually need cold winter rest. If it is too warm, they may rot, become moldy or be damaged by herbivorous animals, »says Meißner. Fruit trees run the risk of blooming too soon. "In the event of late frost, the flowers or the fruit sets can freeze off."

Things look a bit different for animals: Sebastian Kolberg from the Naturschutzbund Deutschland (Nabu) estimates the consequences for the majority of the animals as "less problematic". Hibernation and hibernation are strategies for adapting to cold and lack of food. If this no longer takes place, most animals would have no problem with it, says Kolberg. However, late frosts could be dangerous for hedgehogs that have awakened from hibernation and are looking for food. «In frost, the animals have to get used to it again. This can become a problem for older, weakened animals, »says Kolberg. "It's more of a problem for individuals, not for the population."

According to Nabu, the mild winter means that fewer birds can be seen in Germany's gardens. During a counting campaign at the weekend, volunteers reported almost 38 birds per garden, slightly less than the long-term average in winter, the Nabu said on Wednesday. Only when it got cold and there was snow did many forest birds seek refuge in the gardens of the somewhat warmer cities, where they often found richly stocked feeding places.