Preventing the extinction of the Dinaric-SE Alpine lynx population through reinforcement and long-term conservation
LIFE Lynx is an international project aimed at preventing the extinction of the small and endangered lynx population shared by Croatia and Slovenia. The most important goals are the recovery of genetic diversity of the population and laying the foundations for its sustainable management, with key elements being international cooperation of various institutions, scientific data and multidisciplinary approach to the issue.
LIFE Lynx is an international project aimed at saving an exceptionally small and endangered lynx population in the Dinaric Alps. All animals residing in the Dinaric Alps area are closely related and, consequently, are facing extinction, so the only possible way to save them would be to introduce “fresh genes”. The project includes partners from 5 EU countries and the most important goal is the recovery of the population’s genetic diversity, to be achieved by introducing new individual animals from Slovakia and Romania, laying the foundation for sustainable management of the population.
Due to overhunting, the lynx went extinct in most of Europe, including Croatian and the neighbouring countries, at the beginning of the 20th century. However, in 1973, hunters from Slovenia organised reintroduction of the lynx so six animals were settled in the Dinaric Alps area.
The lynx population shared by Slovenia and Croatia is exceptionally small and endangered. All of the approximately 50 animals residing in these two countries are closely related and, consequently, are facing extinction, so the only possible way to save them would be to introduce “fresh genes”. The European Union has recognised the importance of the initiative and will provide a major share of funding needed for relocating a minimum of 14 new animals from Romania and Slovakia to Slovenia and Croatia. In addition to the LIFE Programme, the project has largely been co-financed by the Slovenian Ministry of Environment and Spatial Planning and the Croatian Environmental Protection and Energy Efficiency Fund.
The project includes partners from 5 EU countries, with cooperation with hunting organisations and Public Institutions for the management of protected areas, which help preserve the lynx population in Croatia on a daily basis, being of utmost importance for the implementation of the project.
Watch a video of releasing reintroduced lynx – Doru. More videos you can find on LIFE Lynx YouTube channel.
Project name: Preventing the extinction of the Dinaric-SE Alpine lynx population through reinforcement and long-term conservation
Lead beneficiary: Slovenia Forest Service
Association Biom, Croatia
Univerza v Ljubljani, Slovenia
Association for the Biological Diversity Conservation, Romania
Zavod Republike Slovenije za varstvo narave/ Institute of the Republic of Slovenia for Nature Conservation, Slovenia
Karlovac University of Applied Sciences (VUKA), Croatia
Faculty of Veterinary Medicine Zagreb, University of Zagreb, Croatia
Progetto Lince Italia, Italy
Technical University in Zvolen, Slovakia
Hunters Association of Slovenia, Slovenia
Arma dei Carabinieri – Comando Unità Tutela Forestale, Ambientale e Agroalimentare, Italy
Project duration: 1 July 2017 – 31 March 2024
Total project value: EUR 6,829,377
EU co-funding (LIFE Programme)
Environmental Protection and Energy Efficiency Fund
Office of the Government of the Republic of Croatia for Cooperation with NGOs
Website of the project: www.lifelynx.eu