twp conservation research projects

Conservation and research projects

Since its foundation in the year 2011 the Transylvanian Wildlife Project`s aim has ever been the preservation of one of the last great wilderness areas in Europe by protecting its wildlife and habitat in the Eastern Carpathian Mountains. Conservation is foremost the act of preserving, including protection and management. With that comes the need for research. Interventions in the ecosystem of any form must be considered well and planned adequately. Thus, conservations actions can only be truly effective if they are based on scientific data. We have to understand the vital ecosystem and the interaction within animals as well as between them and their habitat before developing species and habitat specific management plans.

Wildlife habitats in Romania are threatened by rapid socio-economic development that inevitably proceeds to keep up with the economic activities within the European Union. Massive logging, urbanization and expansion of agricultural fields into wildlife habitat as well as the quickly evolving (transport) infrastructure is already affecting the ecosystem and its biodiversity in Romania on a large scale. Habitat loss and fragmentation are at the present biggest threats to wildlife. Nowadays we have to find solutions how increasing human development can go hand in hand with biodiversity conservation. Everybody seems to know the answer: sustainable management of the environment! But what does it actually imply and how can we preserve or strengthen coexistence between wildlife, habitat and human expansion?

Basically sustainable development is defined as a development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs (Brundtland Report, World Commission on Environment and Development (WCED). Our common future. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1987 p. 43.)

All definitions of sustainable development require that we see the world as a system—a system that connects space; and a system that connects time. Everything we endorse today will have an impact in the future!

The TWP team has dedicated their activities to face these pressing environmental problems and find solutions for them, so that current and future generations will still benefit and take use of forest and natural resources in the Eastern Carpathians by conducting:

  • Non-invasive monitoring of wildlife using photo traps and visual surveillance
  • Habitat analyses and preserving ecological corridors
  • Genetic analyses to study animal dispersal and movement, pop. estimates, and kinship
  • Analyses regarding population data, hunting management, damage reports in the case of large carnivores

Instead of covering a huge study surface, we prefer to focus on a small-scaled area and conduct our research and conservation actions with most thoroughness.