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The Ministry of Natural Resources has approved a new Strategy for the conservation of european bison in Russia

02 june 2021
The new strategy, initiated by WWF-Russia, is designed until 2030
The new document replaced the strategy developed 19 years ago. The work on the text was initiated by WWF Russia and lasted for several years. A new impetus to the preparation of the document was given by the creation of a working group on the conservation of european bison and its transformation into a section of experts on the conservation and restoration of bison. The strategy was prepared by the Ministry of Natural Resources of the Russian Federation, specialists of protected areas, as well as representatives of the scientific and environmental community.

The restoration of the bison, which completely disappeared from the wild in the first half of the twentieth century, is successfully developing all over the world. In 2020 the threat of extinction of the world bison population was reassessed, and now the bison is excluded from the list of endangered species in the Red List of the International Union for Conservation of Nature. Now it is classified as a species close to threatened. The european bison still remains in the Red Book of Russia and in the regional red lists, so actions to restore it in the country are still relevant.

The strategy focuses on the formation of large viable populations of bison populations that will not need human support and supervision. When preparing the strategy, the A. N. Severtsov Institute of Ecology and Evolution of the Russian Academy of Sciences, commissioned by WWF Russia, conducted a study on the allocation of potentially suitable territories for the formation of large populations of bison. The strategy provides for increasing the number of bison in the nature of Russia to 2,750 individuals by 2030, ensuring the priority development of groups for the formation of four bison populations: Central Russian, Central Caucasian, Vladimir and North European. The ways to achieve these goals are outlined in the strategy, which also took into account the successes and failures of previous work. A specific action plan will be formed in the coming months.

"This strategy is the first of a series of recient "road maps" for the conservation of rare species that was approved by the Minitry," – says Dmitry Gorshkov, director of WWF-Russia. - Now the specialists of the ministry, with the support of WWF-Russia and other environmental organizations, are working on strategies for the conservation of the snow leopard, the persian leopard and other species. We support the Ministry in forming a strategic approach to nature conservation." 
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