European Rewilding Network

Return of the Lynx in Poland

Reintroduction of lynx in the area of north-western Poland

Lynx in the area of north-western Poland.

The goal of this project is the restoration of lynx in the area of north-western Poland and ensuring appropriate conditions for the development of this species’ population. In order to transform the  lynx from captivity for reintroduction, we  use a new method which is based on the “born-to-be-free” method used in other projects, which should ensure the success of reintroduction. The main idea is to create conditions for young animals born in captivity that allow them to adapt to living in the wild, then multiply them and release mothers with their sired kittens.

The lynx will be bred in Dzika Zagroda in Jabłonowo. The breeding will be based on pairs of lowland lynxes from the zoological index. This will also promote lynx and its reintroduction as a tourist attraction. The reintroduction of lynxes will be placed in previously determined optimal areas, using individuals from their own breeding and will be preceded by the preparation of young specimens in adaptation areas. All released adult specimens will be subjected to immobilization before being placed in the pens for release, during which GPS collars will be put on them.

Project: Return of the Lynx in Poland
Region: Area of two Regional Management of State Forests (Pila and Szczecinek)
Habitat types: Coniferous and mixed forests, heathlands, meadows
Keystone species: European bison
Fauna (mega) species present: European bison, roe deer, red deer, mufflon, fallow deer, wild boar, wolf
Aim and vision: Restoring lynx into a local trophic network enhancing natural processes in the area and improving regional biodiversity; increasing social ecological awareness.
Linking populations of lynx from Western and Eastern Europe in order to provide genetic exchange for the overall population. Restoration and adaptation of lynx to the human-nature used landscape.
Uniqueness of the project: Successful reintroduction will establish the first free living population of lynx in Western Poland, existing in a human-nature landscape.
Other activities: Eco tourism, Education
Results you aim to accomplish in 10 years from now on: After reaching a sufficient number of lynx in the wild (stable population) - after minimum 10 years of reintroduction - we confine ourselves to deliver genetic influx in order to maintain genetic diversity. Lynx will become local product for branding and promotion of the region in an eco-touristic sense.
Results so far: Starting building of lynx enclosure and achieving agreement for bringing first lynx to the facility.
Inspirational value: Growing social awareness of the role of predators to nature and reducing prejudices towards predators among local communities showing the way of building public acceptance for new species.
Experience you would like to share: Previous experiences from successful reintroduction of European bison to the same area. Active management of two free living European bison herds in human-nature landscape, approximately 160 individuals in total.
Experience you would like to gain: Finding solution to potential conflicts with hunters and local community arising from presence and predation of lynx in a commonly used area.
Map
Country
Poland
Start year
2014
Area type
Forest-grassland mosaic
Natural process
Predation
Flagship species
Lynx
Lynx in the area of north-western Poland.

The goal of this project is the restoration of lynx in the area of north-western Poland and ensuring appropriate conditions for the development of this species’ population. In order to transform the  lynx from captivity for reintroduction, we  use a new method which is based on the “born-to-be-free” method used in other projects, which should ensure the success of reintroduction. The main idea is to create conditions for young animals born in captivity that allow them to adapt to living in the wild, then multiply them and release mothers with their sired kittens.

The lynx will be bred in Dzika Zagroda in Jabłonowo. The breeding will be based on pairs of lowland lynxes from the zoological index. This will also promote lynx and its reintroduction as a tourist attraction. The reintroduction of lynxes will be placed in previously determined optimal areas, using individuals from their own breeding and will be preceded by the preparation of young specimens in adaptation areas. All released adult specimens will be subjected to immobilization before being placed in the pens for release, during which GPS collars will be put on them.

Map
Country
Poland
Start year
2014
Area type
Forest-grassland mosaic
Natural process
Predation
Flagship species
Lynx
Specification
Project: Return of the Lynx in Poland
Region: Area of two Regional Management of State Forests (Pila and Szczecinek)
Habitat types: Coniferous and mixed forests, heathlands, meadows
Keystone species: European bison
Fauna (mega) species present: European bison, roe deer, red deer, mufflon, fallow deer, wild boar, wolf
Description
Aim and vision: Restoring lynx into a local trophic network enhancing natural processes in the area and improving regional biodiversity; increasing social ecological awareness.
Linking populations of lynx from Western and Eastern Europe in order to provide genetic exchange for the overall population. Restoration and adaptation of lynx to the human-nature used landscape.
Uniqueness of the project: Successful reintroduction will establish the first free living population of lynx in Western Poland, existing in a human-nature landscape.
Other activities: Eco tourism, Education
Achievements
Results you aim to accomplish in 10 years from now on: After reaching a sufficient number of lynx in the wild (stable population) - after minimum 10 years of reintroduction - we confine ourselves to deliver genetic influx in order to maintain genetic diversity. Lynx will become local product for branding and promotion of the region in an eco-touristic sense.
Results so far: Starting building of lynx enclosure and achieving agreement for bringing first lynx to the facility.
Exchange
Inspirational value: Growing social awareness of the role of predators to nature and reducing prejudices towards predators among local communities showing the way of building public acceptance for new species.
Experience you would like to share: Previous experiences from successful reintroduction of European bison to the same area. Active management of two free living European bison herds in human-nature landscape, approximately 160 individuals in total.
Experience you would like to gain: Finding solution to potential conflicts with hunters and local community arising from presence and predation of lynx in a commonly used area.
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