Bison to Romania



Friday 21th April - today nine European bison left Avesta breeding centre for releasing in the southern Romania. WWF Romania works with reintroduction of bison in the Tarcus Mountains in the country and the animals from Avesta will be a part of that work.

More than half of the Carpathian Mountains are located in Romania. There are several big areas of untouched nature with intact habitats and ecosystems. Here also live one of Europe's largest populations of large predators such as bears, wolves and Lynx. And now they are working to establish several populations of bison in the country.

In southwest WWF Romania and Rewilding Europe work to reintroduce European Bison into two areas in the Tarcus Mountains and Rusca Mountains. It is to this area the bison from Avesta shall be released in.

However the first reintroduction of European bison project started already 2012 in the northeast of Romania. From Sweden we sent four heifers from Avesta, Borås and Skansen Stockholm. This transport organized by Bison Friend Society in Poland in cooperation with Vanatori Neamt Nature Park, EBCC Romania and EBCC Scandinavia together with the Swedish Association of Zoos and breeders. The animals were later successfully released in the northeast of Romania.

The second transport to Romania from Sweden was organized by Rewilding Europe and they was aimed for the southwest part of the country. In that transport animals from Sweden came from Avesta breeding center and Kolmården.

And now 2017, it is time for the third transport from Sweden with nine animals from Avesta to Romania. This time the transport was financed by the LIFE project running by the WWF Romania in cooperation with Avesta Municipality and EBCC Scandinavian. EBCC has worked as coordinator in Sweden and has selected the animals.

Every transport needs a lot of planning to work well. The staff in Avesta had a busy time taken samples for check so every animal are free from disease. Also samples have taken for DNA identification both for the project and for the Genetic Laboratory in Poland, before the transport.

In the wild populations in Romania, tell us the director Sebastian Catanoiu Vanatori Neamt, that in northeast have six calves been born in the wild. Now we have a wild living population of 25 European bison here, but it took 10 years to realize, he says.
In the southwest they have released 28 bison, and more will come to the big area in that part of the Mountains in the future.