The Šumava/Bohemian Forest Mts. Protected Landscape Area (PLA) was established in 1963 due to efforts made by enthusiastic amateur nature conservationists forming an informal non-governmental organization.
Their original aim was to declare a national park there but this was reached only in 1991 when the Šumava/Bohemian Forest National Park was established on approx. 40% of the PLAs territory. The PLAs mission is to conserve a mosaic of the cultural and natural landscape which had become abandoned after the World War II. Huge areas of the formerly inhabited landscape had been left unmanaged after the Czech people expulsion and the displacement of Germans in the 1930s and 1940s. Instead, military areas were established there, where access to and movement of the general public was strictly limited or prohibited and where economic activities were reduced. The phenomenon lasting 50 to 60 year supported processes known in the late 18thand early 19thcentury when colonization of the whole region had peaked – a continuous expansion of the fallow land. At present, it covers approx. 15% of the PLAs territory. Moreover, relatively large, although fragmented wetlands and natural and semi--natural forests have been preserved there. Even more, also a half of the currently commercially used forests display features of the primary forest growths, e.g. the individual trees from the primary forest, 200 years or more old, can be found there, tree composition is the same or similar to original natural one, etc. The PLA Administration aims at conserving the current land-use patterns, natural ecosystem conservation and at Specially Protected Species protection. The PLAs zonation has been one of the nature conservation instruments: nevertheless, through it only, the nature conservation targets cannot be met, because, in addition to nature conservation and landscape protection purposes, it also takes into account political and development interests within the area. Moreover, it is a good long-term tool towards conservation of the most of significant natural units. At present, 12 Šumava/Bohemian Mts. PLA Administration staff members deal professionally with nature conservation on the territory covering approx. 1,000 square kilometres.