Flying in Naturschutz-areas not specified in RPAS map

Grüetsiwol.

I am struggling on finding info wheter it is allowed to fly a drone over areas that have been marked with a Naturschutz-sign here in canton ZH, but are not specified as closed areas on the RPAS map. Is there a clear yes, or no answer in this case?

These Naturshutz-areas are all over the place, they can be very small areas, and many times it is very difficult to know if the spot of forest in front of you is marked or not.

Thank you for the info already beforehand.

Hello Maukka

A great question your’re asking! There are indeed several different types of nature reserves. Some are regulated under federal law, others under municipal or cantonal law. The RPAS map only represents the federal situation, not the cantonal or municipal situation.

federal nature reserves
On a federal level there are three types of nature reserves: „Jagdbanngebiete“, „Wasser- und Zugvogelschutzgebiete“ and the „Nationalpark“. In all of those nature reserves flying is strictly prohibited and violations are sanctioned severely. Those nature reserves are marked yellow on the RPAS maps.

cantonal and municipal nature reserves
Cantons (and to a certain degree also municipalities) have the right to further regulate the usage of drones in order to protect the environment. This of course includes the possibility of banning drones in nature reserves other than the three types mentioned above. Those additional restrictions would not be visible on the RPAS map. However, those additionaly cantonal restrictions are extremely rare. The canton of zürich does not have any lawful cantonal or municipal regulations for drones in place as of right now.

Therefore, if you encounter a nature reserve that is not marked yellow on the RPAS map, flying your drone is legal (in the canton of zürich).

1 Like

Dankä dankä viel mal Stoepsel!

This is fantastic and clear info! I hope one day we could find the restriction infos in one place througout Switzerland, but that may be an empty dream. But as droning industry is still in its early stages, who knows what can happen!

Have a great day and keep on flying!