Carnivores make a comeback
With its large cities, modern infrastructure network and extensive areas under intensive agriculture, Europe seems an unlikely place for a large carnivore comeback. But despite this, a 2011 study commissioned by Rewilding Europe from the Zoological Society of London and partners found five European carnivore species – the brown bear, Eurasian lynx, wolverine, grey wolf and golden jackal – all expanding their range. In many areas of the continent, these animals are surviving and increasing outside protected areas. This comeback, especially with regard to wolves and bears, shows the amazing resilience of these animals; populations are returning in a human-dominated landscape. During a time where biodiversity is in crisis globally, Europe’s carnivore comeback offers a contrast and a positive outlook for species conservation and human wellbeing.
Perhaps the most remarkable comeback of any carnivore in Europe is that of the Eurasian wolf (Canis lupus lupus).