Grand Barry wildlife reserve, France

  • Country:
  • Start year:
  • Location:
    Veronne (26340), Drome, France
  • Size (ha):
  • Area Type:
  • Type of protection:
    Level 1b of the classification established by the International Union for Nature Conservation

At the foot of the Vercors massif, vast spaces are now dedicated to hunt without any sanctuary for wildlife as the National Reserve of the Vercors high plateaus allows hunting, forestry logging and sheep breeding. The Grand Barry Wildlife Reserve is the only one where nature can take its own course.

Mixed vegetation in Grand Barry


  • Habitat types: Hills (Collineen)
  • Keystone species present: Chamois
  • Fauna (mega) species present: Red deer, roe deer, woodcocks


  • Description: This reserve is the first wildlife reserve in France. In this area, nature is free from human interventions including hunting. This reserve is under supervision and a botanical and faunistic monitoring is made.
  • Aim: The Grand Barry wildlife reserve meets the requirements of the highest level of sites protection established by the International Union for Nature Conservation (level 1b). It is one of the first sites in France where this level is achieved, in the aim of creating real wildlife sanctuaries.
  • Vision: Regulatory measures tend to run out of steam and show their limits linked to the arduousness of administrative procedures and to lobbies pressure. Land management appears to be a reliable and sustainable method to protect natural habitats; at the moment, this method is not very used in France.
  • Uniqueness: ASPAS created wildlife reserves to set up a network of reserves that apply a real level of protection. For years, the few national reserves that are created in France allow hunting, forestry logging and in most cases, farming. ASPAS chose the highest level of protection defined by IUCN.
  • Results so far: Since the creation of the wildlife reserve, the number of mammals (especially chamois, red deer, roe deer) has increased on the site.
  • Flagship species: Chamois


  • Inspirational value: Our initiative fills in the gaps in French protected areas that are free from hunting, fishing and free from any other human impacts. We intend to create a network of fully protected areas. The label “Réserve de Vie Sauvage ®” was officially submitted to the French institution “INPI”. Therefore, this label will be granted by ASPAS to other structures or private individuals who agree with our specifications.<br />
  • Experience you would like to share: How to raise enough money to buy real estates and how to organise site surveillance.
  • Experience you would like to gain: The growth of this site and the establishment of a wildlife reserves network with other organisations that share the same vision.
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