The LIFE Lynx project joins the European Rewilding Network


The LIFE Lynx project joins the European Rewilding Network

4 November 2019
The Eurasian lynx population of the Dinaric Alps of Slovenia and Croatia was driven to extinction in the early twentieth century, largely as a result of habitat loss, lack of prey and human persecution.

In the early 1970s a group of hunters and foresters reintroduced six lynx to Slovenia’s Kočevsko region from the former Czechoslovakia, but while their numbers gradually increased, the animals remained isolated.

By the mid-1990s the population was back in decline, mainly due to genetic deterioration. Today it is small, isolated and extremely inbred, with an estimated 20 lynx remaining in Slovenia, and 40 to 60 in Croatia.

Timely boost

Starting in 2017, the objective of the seven-year LIFE Lynx project is to rescue the dwindling Dinaric-SE Alpine lynx population and ensure its long-term sustainability. These efforts have just received a timely boost, with the LIFE Lynx project admitted to the European Rewilding Networkas its 70th member.

Project coordinator Rok Černe is delighted to be helping the network reach such an important milestone.

“We are really looking forward to sharing our results, insight and experience, and to learning from other European rewilding projects,” says the Slovenian. “Hopefully the knowledge we have gained can be used to enhance the effectiveness of other similar projects.”