Southern Carpathians rewilding area
Location:Southwestern Carpathians - Tarcu Mountains
Type of protection:Mainly in Natura 2000 and two National Parks
Making the Southern Carpathians a wilder place. For the benefit of nature and people. The whole area has much stronger populations of its original native wildlife species, boosted by reintroductions and re-stockings when considered necessary.
- Habitat types: Ranging from the 2,196 m peak of Mount Tarcu in the north, to the Danube River at 150 m in the south, the area covers a wide variety of ecosystems -alpine meadows and grasslands, old beech and fir forests, steep cliff formations, and undulating mosaic landscapes with open grasslands intersected by woodlands (with a mixture of deciduous tree species, including oak) closer to the Danube.
- Fauna (mega) species present: Brown bear, Wolf, Lynx, Wild boar, Red deer, Roe deer, Chamois
- Description: The Southern Carpathians have become famous for the many dramatic and beautiful natural settings and the exciting wildlife - especially as a bear watching area (thanks to the size of the bear population here, in combination with the existence of established local professional wildlife watching tour companies). In addition to that, the rising value of the regional branding allows many other local businesses and regional products to also benefit from the rewilding activities.
- Aim: The whole area has much stronger populations of its original native wildlife species, boosted by reintroductions and re-stockings. The large carnivores are seen as a normal part of the fauna and become attractions for the area, as well as other wildlife species like European bison.
- Vision: Making the Southern Carpathians a wilder place. For the benefit of nature and people.<br /> The whole area has much stronger populations of its original native wildlife species, boosted by reintroductions and re-stockings when considered necessary.
- Accomplished in 10 years from now: By 2022, the Southern Carpathian rewilding zone comprises of at least 100,000 ha, encompassing for example the Domogled National Park, the Retezat National Park, the Tarcu mountains Natura 2000 site and parts of Mehidinti Geopark.
- Uniqueness: The wider area forms a backbone of more than 1 million hectares of protected areas already in place, rich wildlife, large intact forests, a high concentration of biodiversity, un-fragmented landscapes, wild rivers, and large mosaic landscapes shaped by sustainable farming practices.
- Results so far: Signed agreements with the local community representative, with local forest department, and agreements in principle with Environmental County Agency, Veterinary County Department and the support of the local community.
- Flagship species: Bison
- Other characteristics: Community involved, Eco tourism, Education, Recreational activities, Research, Sale of sustainable products
- Inspirational value: The Southern Carpathian mountain range is one of the least human touched areas in Europe, forming a wild continuum of more than 1 million ha. This is one of the best natural places in Europe where dense and viable wildlife populations could be rebuilt and where natural processes could occur on extensive scale. The Southern Carpathians could definitely be considered the Green Heart of Europe.
- Experience you would like to share: Community relationship; Stakeholder engagement; Species reintroduction; Ecological connectivity.
- Experience you would like to gain: Community development; Development of alternative conservation-related enterprises; Enhance natural processes.