Wolf Projects

Wolves in Baden-Württemberg

Paving the way for a return

wolf is running

On their migrations, wolves can cover long distances.

© Joachim Flachs

After being extinct in Germany for more than 150 years, the wolf is gradually making a return to its old territories. Since 2015, there have been repeated wolf sightings in the German federal state of Baden-Württemberg; according to the most recent data (February 2023), four single animal (three males and one female) permanently living there. Wolves can find their way to Baden-Württemberg from the north and east of Germany, as well as from the Italian-French Alps. Young wolves often travel many hundreds of kilometres In search of new territories. Due to the long absence of large predators, people in the south-west of Germany are unaccustomed to living alongside wolves. In order to ensure a peaceful coexistence between wolves and humans, conflicts need to be defused as early as possible.

What EuroNatur and its partners are doing to protect wolves in Germany and what we have been able to achieve together:
  • Working to raise awareness: We want to eliminate people’s prejudices towards wolves and prepare them for the animal’s return. In 2013, as a first step, EuroNatur worked with a group of experts to develop its “Guidelines for dealing with Wolves", thus laying the groundwork for effective wolf management in Baden-Württemberg.
     
  • Building trust: EuroNatur, together with other conservation organisations and hunting groups, is a sponsor of the “Wolf Compensation Fund”. This enables livestock owners to be compensated, in a quick and unbureaucratic way, for any damage caused by wolves. We are also working to help livestock farmers take preventative measures to protect their herds.

Partners: EuroNatur is a member of the working group on Wolves in the AG Luchs Baden-Württemberg (Baden-Württemberg Lynx Association.)

Funding: EuroNatur sponsors and donors.


Wolves in Central Eastern Europe

Connecting migration routes

Around the turn of the millennium, wolves migrated across the Oder River from Poland and recolonised their former territory. The future development of wolf populations will also depend, in part, on how well the animals fare in Poland. According to analyses provided by EuroNatur’s partners, there could be three times as many wolves living there if sufficient migration corridors existed. At the moment however, it is becoming increasingly difficult for wolves to migrate westwards from Eastern Poland. Intensive land use, traffic routes and human settlement are all disrupting the animals' former migration corridors as well as fragmenting their habitats.

On the trail of the wolves

Screenshot On the trail of the wolves
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The Beskids Bermuda Triangle

In the Polish-Czech-Slovakian border area (the Beskids Mountains), wolves face another life-threatening danger in addition to urban sprawl: hunting. Whilst the wolf is protected in Poland and the Czech Republic, there is an annual hunting quota for the animals in Slovakia. This is not only having a devastating effect on the wolf population in Slovakia, it is also impacting the neighbouring countries of Poland and the Czech Republic. In Slovakia, most wolves are shot very close to the Polish border. This is threatening to wipe out packs whose territories extend into Poland and Slovakia.

What EuroNatur and its partners are doing to protect wolves in Central Eastern Europe and what we have been able to achieve together:
  • Connecting habitats: We are drawing up proposals for preventing the negative impacts of landscape fragmentation on wolves and other wildlife. As a basis for this work, we are using long-term studies on the migratory behaviour of wolves. As a result, a large number of green bridges have been built, particularly in the north-west of Poland. We will also work to increase the number of crossing aids in Slovakia.
     
  • Reducing wolf shooting: Together with our partners from the Carpathian Wildlife Society, we have succeeded, over the past few years, in getting hunting quotas for wolves in Slovakia gradually reduced - from 150 animals in 2010 to 70 more recently. Wolf-hunting drives have also been banned.
     
  • Strengthening cooperation: In order to strengthen alliances with neighbouring countries, EuroNatur has launched a wolf information platform. As part of this initiative, wolf researchers from Poland, the Czech Republic and Slovakia will meet once a year to share data and knowledge and improve cross-border cooperation.
Herd protection measure in Poland
© Wilk

Our Polish partners installing a lappet fence to ward off wolves.

Partners: Wilk, CWS, Hnuti DUHA, „Workshop for All Beings“.

Funding: Elisabeth Seifert-Becker’s Foundation Fund for Wolf Protection in Memory of Viktoria Neumann, Emilie and Franz Seifert, EuroNatur donors and sponsors.

Join in and help us!

Join the many people getting actively involved for Europe’s wolves. We are grateful for any donation or active contribution you can make! In doing so, you are supporting an independent and networked civil society in Europe, which is campaigning vigorously to protect Europe’s wolves. Please help us any way you can! 

How you can help
Donation

Future needs nature. EuroNatur cares for it. Please help anyway you can. With your donation you will make an effective contribution to protect wolves in Europe.

Wolf sponsorship

Admired, feared, persecuted: Man's relationship with the wolf has been ambivalent for millennia. Help us to protect these fascinating animals permanently.

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