The Seewinkel area has been shaped by the fluctuating water levels; flooding and dry periods alternated. During the past 100 to 150 years, parts of the area were drained to create safe land for cultivation. Today, water retention measures are taken in co-operation with local farmers.
Drainage made the cultivation of many parts of the Seewinkel possible. Pasture land and wet meadows were transferred into farmland and vineyards. It is obvious, that this caused much harm to the natural environment. But now, agriculture has changed a lot in the past few years and many drainage channels in the National Park area have lost their agricultural function because former farmland has been set aside. Together with holders of water rights water retention measures are taken in such areas.
The Zitzmannsdorfer Wiesen is a positive example within the Nature Conservation Zone. Here, some parts are flooded most of the time, and some are even flooded all year long. In the Illmitz-Hölle Conservation Zone, several locks were built in the spring of 2008. All projects are carried out together with the Department for hydraulic engineering of the province Burgenland and the landowners. The goal is to re-establish near-natural conditions in the dry Seewinkel and to slow down the water run-off as much as possible.