The basic idea behind animal transplantation is to restore a viable population to an area where the species has previously disappeared from in a manner that does not limit or prevent the free movement of animals.

Should large predators be transplanted?

A tranquilised wolverine lies on its stomach on top of a net on a bed of moss. Transplanted wolverine. Photo: Metsähallitus

The method's feasibility is reduced by the lack of suitable wilderness habitats and the tendency of the transplanted animals to migrate back to their original territories. Local residents are also often against having large carnivores transplanted into their environment. Recent studies have shown that young wolves spread very effectively, which makes it possible that the species may spread to the entire country even without transplantations.

National Resources Institute Finland (Luke) has transplanted around 20 wolverines and half a dozen lynxes and bears in Finland between 1984−1998. No wolves have been transplanted. The transplanted wolverines were taken from the reindeer herding area and placed mainly in central and western Finland. The now established wolverine population of Ostrobothnia and northern Central Finland is largely the result of transplantation. Bears and lynxes have been transplanted to Northern Häme, which also resulted in established populations.

Sightings as the basis of population estimates

Natural Resources Institute Finland's (Luke) estimates on the numbers of animals are primarily based on sighting data collected by a volunteer organisation consisting of the contact persons of regional game management associations. Other utilised methods include on-the-ground censuses made by hunter...

Evaluation of conservation status

The conservation status of large carnivores is evaluated according to the implementation report of the Habitats Directive.