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 Animals  Romania Project #41940

Protect Biodiversity in Romania

by Frankfurt Zoological Society - U.S.
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Protect Biodiversity in Romania
Protect Biodiversity in Romania
Protect Biodiversity in Romania
Protect Biodiversity in Romania
Protect Biodiversity in Romania
Protect Biodiversity in Romania
Protect Biodiversity in Romania
Protect Biodiversity in Romania
Protect Biodiversity in Romania
Protect Biodiversity in Romania
Protect Biodiversity in Romania
Protect Biodiversity in Romania
Protect Biodiversity in Romania
Protect Biodiversity in Romania
Protect Biodiversity in Romania
Protect Biodiversity in Romania
Protect Biodiversity in Romania

Last week, Foundation Conservation Carpathia (FCC) joined the solidarity movement in the face of the Covid-19 pandemic and bought and distributed the first 500 packages of food and hygiene products to the elderly in need in ten communities of our project area in the South-Eastern Fagaras Mountains and Leaota.

As of April 5, we have raised 102,000 €, which means we have about two months of the Food for Elders Program covered and it allows us to move on to phase II of the program which we hope you can support. 

With the lock-down and the consequent hardships for the local people – especially the Elders over 65 years, and those who don’t have relatives in the village and who don’t have sufficient income, the situation in the rural areas has turned quite dramatic. All eyes are on the cities, the sick, and the hospitals, but the situation in the countryside is by no ways less worrying.

For this reason, we decided to help our neighbors as a humanitarian gesture. We set up a project team within FCC for this and developed a “Food for Elders Programme”. Given the situation and the ban on buying bigger quantities for stockpiling, and our philosophy to mainly support local small-scale producers, we faced quite a challenge, but succeeded:

  • We purchased more than half of the products (cheese, vegetable spreads, potatoes, apples, bread, honey, pickled veggies, etc.) from local producers and thus supported the local economy in these hard times.
  • We managed to convince a large C&C to assemble the remaining products (oil, sugar, salt, rice, corn flower etc.) and deliver them for free to our logistics centre in Rucar.
  • We managed to get sanitary products (toilet paper, hand soap, etc.) sponsored from a big online distribution company, and a car sponsored from a car-rental company for delivery. 
  • We asked the town halls in 10 communities in the project area to identify people who are really in need – and managed to get a good cooperation with all these communities.

Our staff worked tirelessly to organise this all, to assemble the food bags, and deliver yesterday and today the first 500 packages to people in need. The further distribution of these packages will be carried out regularly during the next four weeks for these 500 people, as long as the emergency situation lasts, and the seniors are not able to be mobile.

If you would like to contribute and help to increase the number of people supported in the area or to support the possible extension of the support period, please donate. Yesterday we managed to create 500 smiles of people in need!

For more information you can go to our website at "" Thanks so much! 

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Foundation Conservation Carpthia (FCC) December 2019 to January 2020 Field Report:


  • 30.6 ha of additional forest secured for full protection.
  • We have continued to assign fire wood to the local communities from our neighboring forests.
  • The strong winds have taken down mainly spruce, but also some beech trees – except of where trees are blocking roads, we will leave it as it is.
  • We continue to patrol to prevent illegal activities in the forests that we protect and in the local neighborhoods.
  • Due to the lack of snow in January, we have collected and prepared humus from the forest to use it in our green house.
  • We deposited juniper seeds over the winter.
  • Spruce monoculture conversion work has started by opening the plantations to get light on the ground and to prepare for planting beech and sycamore in spring.
  • We mapped the new properties where restoration measures will be taken in spring: zone, surfaces, saplings.
  • You can join our ecological restoration campaign, donate or adopt clear-cut parcels at:

Wildlife conservation Update

  • After 200 years, the Fagaras Mountains are again HOME for the European bison! The first bison are doing well in the quarantine enclosure. See photos!
  • Wildlife conflicts are beginning to decrease, though there were a few incidents with bears and wild boar during December. This is mainly due to the mild winter and the lack of food in the forest as there was no beech fructification in autumn. Our rapid intervention team regularly checks the five electric fences in use.
  • Rangers patrolling to prevent poaching of wildlife and fish.
  • We have collected biological samples, mainly from wolves, such as scats, urine and hair, continues. Our team of rangers got support from volunteers and managed to collect 61 samples so far. See photos!
  • Our breeding programme for the Romanian Carpathian shepherd dog continues with positive results. Soon we will donate new puppies to farmers in the Fagaras mountains. And, we have reached 111 healthy, beautiful Hungarian Grey cattle and calves. See photos!

Events / Presentations / Community Outreach

  • The “Long term monitoring of large carnivores in the Carpathians” event at Ovidius Natural Sciences University Constanta gave us the possibility to share our recently completed study on the subject.
  • We participated in a workshop together with other environmental NGOs regarding the wildlife monitoring and management. A common vision will be submitted to the Ministry of Environment.
  • In a meeting with the farmers in Rucar we discussed wildlife-livestock conflicts and how to better resolve them.
  • Barbara and Christoph Promberger, executive directors of FCC, were awarded the CARIERE Excellence Award for their life-long personal and professional involvement in the preservation of the natural heritage in Romania. Gala brings together the elite of communities of entrepreneurs, managers, national and world-renowned specialists who contribute to a better Romania. Huge congrats to Barbara and Christoph!

Join us in:

  • Creating the largest forested National Park in Europe.
  • Annual restoration of the original ecosystem on over 100 ha of illegal clear-cuts.
  • Protecting wildlife on a total of 65,000 ha.
  • Sustainable development of local communities.
  • Environmental education projects.

Thank you from all of us at Foundation Conservation Carpathia for your support and contributions!

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Please see attached Field Reports for the detailed quarterly updates. 

Brief Summary of Main activities in October 2019

Forest Conservation and Management:
• 1,525 ha of additional forest secured for full protection.
• New forest management and conservation plans submitted to the environment authorities.

Ecological Restoration
• Start of Autumn planting campaign: 4,000 saplings were planted in October.
• We have continued working to cut the grass around the saplings to avoid suffocation of saplings under the snow, involving 66 local people as seasonal workers and one local contractor. Results so far: 220 ha eastern Fagaras Mountains, 30 ha in Leaota, 70 ha southern Fagaras Mountains.
• Dwarf pine cones and juniper fruits were prepared for spring restoration activities.

Wildlife Activities
• DNA sampling of Red Deer has finished. A total of 195 samples have been collected.
• We have installed the camera traps for lynx monitoring: 12 locations have already had positive results and we are working on the 2018-2019 report that will estimate the abundance and density of lynx in a basic exploratory model.
• Preparing for the arrival of the first bison for reintroduction: authorizations, temporary enclosures, hay acquisition, selection of individuals for the first lot of 10 bison.
• Collecting aquatic macroinvertebrates and water samples for eDNA and measuring the physical and chemical parameters of the water, for beaver reintroduction.
• Rangers patrolling to prevent poaching and illegal fishing.

• Management measures: The wildlife rapid intervention team continues its efforts to keep wild boar and bears away from the villages. The 4 electric fences installed in the local communities work well, but despite this and other measures implemented, problems are still reported. We have requested authorization from the Ministry of Environment to relocate another problem bear that causes livestock damage and is a threat to the local people.
• Consultancy was offered to the villagers that asked for FCC’s expertise on how to secure their property against wildlife damages.
• First eleven puppies of pure-bred Romanian Carpathian shepherd dogs were donated to local farmers that graze livestock on the pastures managed by FCC in the Fagaras Mountains. Breeding these dogs and donating them to local shepherds is part of our strategy to prevent the damage caused by large carnivores among livestock.

• The end of the hay making season resulted with 14,500 bales of alfalfa and hay.
• We have 103 Hungarian Grey cattle and the heard is growing with some beautiful, healthy calves.
• The dog breeding program is going well, we still have 3 puppies left that will be donated this year to the shepherds in our project area. Also, another 7 puppies were born in October.
• The 3 days/3 nights wilderness camp “The power from within” was a success. 

Communication and Community Outreach – Partnership for Conservation

• We hosted the annual meeting of beneficiaries of the Endangered Landscapes Programme, a program funded by Arcadia and implemented by the Cambridge Conservation Initiative UK. 

• We planted 40,000 seedlings with the help of the private Romanian medical clinic MedLife and another 15,000 will find their place on the slopes in the mountains, this fall and next spring. A new forest will grow in the Eastern Fagaras mountains, along with 55,000 children born in MedLife maternity hospitals!

Please find even more updates and achievements in the October Field Report attached! 

Many millions of thanks! We are so grateful for your support!

Your friends at Foundation Conservation Carpathia.


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Organization Information

Frankfurt Zoological Society - U.S.

Location: Washington, DC - USA
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @FZS_Frankfurt
Project Leader:
Maia Kallen
Washington, DC United States
$1,969 raised of $10,000 goal
21 donations
$8,031 to go
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