LIFE Lynx project’s primary objective is rescuing the Dinaric-SE Alpine lynx population from extinction and to preserve it in the long term. In this moment, the population is small, isolated, and extremely inbred. It urgently needs reinforcement by introducing additional, healthy animals from another population. We will reinforce the Dinaric-SE Alpine population with lynx from the viable source population in the Carpathians, while maintaining high public support. We will collaborate across all EU countries sharing this population to develop and implement a systematic approach to ensure long-term viability of the reinforced population. Importantly, we will work closely with core stakeholders to further develop partnerships and to ensure broad public acceptance for lynx conservation. We also aim to develop science-based management tools for strategic planning to ensure long-term viability of lynx, also by using computer modelling based on data from the project to understand how to genetically and demographically manage the population in the long term. This scientific information will be incorporated into management plans and other strategic documents. Another objective is to improve population connectivity for lynx. Natural gene flow of lynx will be increased, in order to avoid potential additional reintroductions in the future. Such a metapopulation will help reduce negative impacts of habitat fragmentation and will reverse genetic deterioration across entire Dinaric-SE Alpine population.
Applicant: Zavod za gozdove Slovenije / Slovenia Forest Service
Partners: Hunters Association of Slovenia (Slovenia), Institute of the Republic of Slovenia for Nature Conservation (Slovenia), University of Ljubljana (Slovenia), Arma dei carabinieri – Comando Unità Tutela Forestale, Ambientale e Agroalimentare, (Italy), Progetto Lince (Italy), Association BIOM, (Croatia), Faculty of Veterinary Medicine University of Zagreb, (Croatia), Karlovac University of Applied Sciences, (Croatia), Association for the Biological Diversity Conservation, (Romunia), Technical university in Zvolen, (Slovakia).
Co-financers: European Commission (LIFE), Ministry of the Environment and Spatial Planning, EURONATUR, Bernd Thies Fundation, Ministry of Environmental and Nature Protection of the Republic of Croatia
Total budget: 6,829,377 €
EU contribution: 4,081,404 €
MESP contribution: 1,340,168 €