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Reintroductions as a Management tool for European Ungulates

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... Поједини аутори (Apollonio et al., 2014) 2) подаци су доступни како за Словенију тако и за Србију, при чему су подаци за обе земље добијени применом сличне методе; ...
... Штавише, обични јелен је неколико пута више насељаван него друге врсте дивљачи, слично као у многобројним земљама Европе (Apollonio et al., 2014 Део резултата упоредне анализе насељавања ове врсте у ограђена узгајалишта "Ломничка река", "Милошева вода", "Кумовац" и "Валмиште" дат је у табели 3. ...
... Записани (документовани) случајеви реинтродукција су приказани болдовано. (Извор:Apollonio et al., 2014) Табела 15д. Преглед насељавања четири најважније и најраспрострањеније аутохтоне врсте дивљих папкара у Европи. ...
... In historical times, when the populations were locally exterminated or their numbers were low, there were attempts to strengthen them with introduced animals (Apollonio et al., 2014;Baker & Hoelzel, 2013). ...
... In historical times, when the populations were locally exterminated or their numbers were low, there were attempts to strengthen them with introduced animals (Apollonio et al., 2014;Baker & Hoelzel, 2013). ...
Article
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To provide the most comprehensive picture of species phylogeny and phylogeography of European roe deer (Capreolus capreolus), we analyzed mtDNA control region (610 bp) of 1469 samples of roe deer from Central and Eastern Europe and included into the analyses additional 1541 mtDNA sequences from GenBank from other regions of the continent. We detected two mtDNA lineages of the species: European and Siberian (an introgression of C. pygargus mtDNA into C. capreolus). The Siberian lineage was most frequent in the eastern part of the continent and declined toward Central Europe. The European lineage contained three clades (Central, Eastern, and Western) composed of several haplogroups, many of which were separated in space. The Western clade appeared to have a discontinuous range from Portugal to Russia. Most of the haplogroups in the Central and the Eastern clades were under expansion during the Weichselian glacial period before the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM), while the expansion time of the Western clade overlapped with the Eemian interglacial. The high genetic diversity of extant roe deer is the result of their survival during the LGM probably in a large, contiguous range spanning from the Iberian Peninsula to the Caucasus Mts and in two northern refugia.
... Similar results were published in Šprem and Buzan (2016), where haplotypes from the Biokovo, Dinara, Velebit and Prenj Mts. grouped with six haplotypes from the Velebit Mt. as a result of past chamois translocations (see Apollonio et al. 2014 for a review). The analysis of the complete mitogenome (Iacolina et al. 2021) revealed the presence of an R.r. rupicapra sequence within the R.r. balcanica clade. ...
Preprint
The translocation of wild animal species became a common practice worldwide to re-establish local populations threatened with extinction. Archaeological data confirm that chamois once lived in the Biokovo Mountain but, prior to their reintroduction in the 1960s, there was no written evidence of their recent existence in the area. The population was reintroduced in the period 1964–1969 when 48 individuals of Balkan chamois from the neighbouring mountains in Bosnia and Herzegovina were released. The main objective of this study was to determine the accuracy of the existing historical data on the origin of the Balkan chamois population from the Biokovo Mountain and to assess the genetic diversity and population structure of the source and translocated populations 56 years after the first reintroduction. We used 16 microsatellite loci to analyse the genetic structure of three source chamois populations from Prenj, Čvrsnica and Čabulja Mountains and from Mt. Biokovo. Both STRUCTURE and GENELAND analyses showed a clear separation of the reintroduced population on Biokovo from Prenj’s chamois and considerable genetic similarity between the Biokovo population and the Čvrsnica–Čabulja population. This suggests that the current genetic composition of the Biokovo populations does not derive exclusively from Prenj, as suggested by the available literature and personal interviews, but also from Čvrsnica and Čabulja. GENELAND analysis recognized the Balkan chamois from Prenj as a separate cluster, distinct from the populations of Čvrsnica and Čabulja. This suggests that the Neretva River and the state M17 road are geographic barriers for the species dispersal, as they form a genetic boundary.
... Animal species can be strongly managed by humans across their natural ranges, being harvested, translocated or sometimes admixed with alien or domesticated forms. All these direct actions can amplify the effects of other ecological perturbations, such as habitat or landscape modifications, contributing to jeopardizing the gene pool of wild populations and their adaptive capacities (Allendorf et al., 2008;Laikre et al., 2010;Boyce et al., 2011;Apollonio et al., 2014). ...
Article
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Human activities can globally modify natural ecosystems determining ecological, demographic and range perturbations for several animal species. These changes can jeopardize native gene pools in different ways, leading either to genetic homogenization, or conversely, to the split into genetically divergent demes. In the past decades, most European wild boar (Sus scrofa) populations were heavily managed by humans. Anthropic manipulations have strongly affected also Italian populations through heavy hunting, translocations and reintroductions that might have deeply modified their original gene pools. In this study, exploiting the availability of the well-mapped porcine genome, we applied genomic tools to explore genome-wide variability in Italian wild boar populations, investigate their genetic structure and detect signatures of possible introgression from domestic pigs and non-native wild boar. Genomic data from 134 wild boar sampled in six areas of peninsular Italy and in Sardinia were gathered using the Illumina Porcine SNP60 BeadChip (60k Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms – SNPs) and compared with reference genotypes from European specimens and from domestic pigs (both commercial and Italian local breeds), using multivariate and maximum-likelihood approaches. Pairwise FST values, multivariate analysis and assignment procedures indicated that Italian populations were highly differentiated from all the other analyzed European wild boar populations. Overall, a lower heterozygosity was found in the Italian population than in the other European regions. The most diverging populations in Castelporziano Presidential Estate and Maremma Regional Park can be the result of long-lasting isolation, reduced population size and genetic drift. Conversely, an unexpected similarity was found among Apennine populations, even at high distances. Signatures of introgression from both non-Italian wild boar and domestic breeds were very limited. To summarize, we successfully applied genome-wide procedures to explore, for the first time, the genomic diversity of Italian wild boar, demonstrating that they represent a strongly heterogeneous assemblage of demes with different demographic and manipulation histories. Nonetheless, our results suggest that a native component of genomic variation is predominant over exogenous ones in most populations.
... Similar results were published in Šprem and Buzan (2016), where haplotypes from the Biokovo, Dinara, Velebit and Prenj Mts. grouped with six haplotypes from the Velebit Mt. as a result of past chamois translocations (see Apollonio et al. 2014 for a review). The analysis of the complete mitogenome (Iacolina et al. 2021) revealed the presence of an R.r. rupicapra sequence within the R.r. balcanica clade. ...
Article
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The Balkan chamois (Rupicapra rupicapra balcanica) is widespread on the Balkan Peninsula, along mountain massifs from Croatia in the north to Greece in the south and Bulgaria in the east. Knowledge on the genetic structure of Balkan chamois populations is limited and restricted to local studies. Therefore, the main objective of this study was to use nuclear (16 microsatellites) and mitochondrial (partial 376 base pairs control region) markers to investigate the genetic structure of this chamois subspecies throughout its distribution range and to obtain information on the degree of connectivity of the different (sub)populations. We extracted DNA from bone, dried skin and muscle tissue and successfully genotyped 92 individuals of Balkan chamois and sequenced the partial control region in 44 individuals. The Bayesian analysis suggested 3 genetic clusters and assigned individuals from Serbia and Bulgaria to two separate clusters, while individuals from the other countries belonged to the same cluster. Thirty new haplotypes were obtained from partial mitochondrial DNA sequences, with private haplotypes in all analyzed populations and only two haplotypes shared among populations, indicating the possibility of past translocations. The subspecies genetic composition presented here provides the necessary starting point to assess the conservation status of the Balkan chamois and allows the development of conservation strategies necessary for its sustainable management and conservation.
Article
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The Northern chamois (Rupicapra rupicapra) is a weakly polygynous species widely distributed in the mountain regions of Europe and the Near East. The Balkan chamois (R. r. balcanica) occurs in the mountain regions of southeastern Europe, and its ecology and behavior during the rut are largely unknown, making it one of the most understudied subspecies of chamois. Despite the scarce body mass dimorphism, males display a developed behavioral polymorphism that affects the mating success and possibly survival. Here, we provide the first quantitative analysis of the behavioral repertoire and activity budget of rutting male Balkan chamois and compare frequencies of different behavioral categories (i.e., courtship and direct and indirect aggression) with those observed in Alpine (R. r. rupicapra) and Tatra (R. r. tatrica) chamois. Male Balkan chamois have a rich behavioral repertoire (24 different behavioral patterns) with a prevalence of courtship behaviors and a higher frequency of indirect than direct forms of aggression. Compared with Alpine and Tatra chamois, no significant difference in the frequency of different behavioral categories was detected. The activity budget showed that when not rutting, males spent ~ 41% of their time foraging and ~ 59% lying down. Time spent rutting was negatively correlated with time spent foraging and time spent lying down, suggesting that time spent for mating activities increased at the expense of foraging and resting. In dominant males, the frequency of courtship behavior was higher than the frequency of aggressive behaviors, whereas in subordinate males, no differences were detected among behavioral patterns. Furthermore, no significant differences in activity budgets were detected between male types. This is the first report of Balkan chamois rutting behavior and provides important insights into the ecology of a poorly known subspecies.
Article
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Although the two species of chamois (Rupicapra rupicapra and R. pyrenaica) are currently classified as least-concern by the IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature), inconsistencies on the subspecies classification reported in literature make it challenging to assess the conservation status of the single subspecies. Previous studies relying on mitochondrial genes, sometimes in combination with nuclear or Y-chromosome markers, reported the presence of clusters corresponding to the geographic distribution but highlighting ambiguities in the genus phylogeny. Here we report novel de novo assembled sequences of the mitochondrial genome from nine individuals, including previously unpublished R. r. balcanica and R. r. tatrica subspecies, and use them to untangle the genus phylogeny. Our results based on the full mitogenome inferred phylogeny confirm the previously reported genus subdivision in three clades and its monophyletic positioning within the Caprinae. Phylogeny and taxonomy of Rupicapra species thus remain controversial prompting for the inclusion of archeological remains to solve the controversy.
Technical Report
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Rupicapra rupicapra - IUCN reassessment 2020
Article
• Throughout recent years, ungulates have experienced significant increases in numbers and geographic range sizes in Europe, becoming locally overabundant populations in some regions. Changes in legislation regarding poaching, abandonment of land and re‐naturalisation of habitats, and decreasing numbers of hunters, among other things, have led to alarming scenarios in wild ungulate biology. Although ungulates bring some financial benefits for ecosystems and society through tourism and hunting, the problems associated with populations that are no longer controlled can outweigh the advantages. Damage to forestry and agriculture, ungulate‐vehicle collisions, and diseases are among the most concerning problems related to ungulate overabundance. • To deal with these problems and to decide on the best management strategy to apply, it is essential to have tools available to monitor populations with an integrative approach based on ecological change indicators, and to assess population and ecosystem status. Furthermore, in a globalised world, people’s opinions matter, and sociological studies regarding human perception of wild mammals must take place in order to allow proper management, including consideration of people’s expectations as well as animal and ecosystem needs. Successful and unsuccessful management strategies have already been attempted, and the knowledge of consequences over time enables an adaptive approach. • Management of ungulate populations is a complex subject, and each case should be studied, analysing the cost_performance balance of measures to be taken, and ensuring ongoing financial means to carry out and continue with successful ecosystem management strategies. Multidisciplinary teams should be built, including biologists, veterinarians, stakeholders, sociologists, and others, to deal with the management of European wild ungulate populations.
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