A project on ecological networks has been granted in August 2007 by Policy programme Biodiversity International of the Dutch Government.
The Carpathians are one of the last vast wilderness areas in Europe. Increasing human pressure on this area is fragmenting wildlife habitat, which affects in the first place large mammals. Biodiversity conservation in this area requires the establishment of connections between its protected areas to enable migration and genetic exchange between wildlife populations.
The first moves for the development of an ecological network have been made, but the actual establishment on the ground is hampered by lack of experience and an inadequate legal and policy framework. As the Ukrainian Carpathians are not part of the European Union the situation along the borders with Romania and Poland is more complex due to difference legislation. So far, initiatives on the development of ecological networks in Ukraine have mainly focused on the planning of networks, awareness and information management, but not on their establishment.
This project proposes to plan and establish corridors between selected protected areas in Ukraine, Romania and Poland, as a pilot exercise to investigate best practices and policies for corridor development. The experiences of this pilot will be translated into directives for the development of policies, legislation and other policy instruments and transferred to the policy process at national and regional level through the Ministry of Environmental Protection of Ukraine and the international network of the Carpathian Convention.
The project is implemented in collaboration with the Ukraine Ministry of Environmental Protection, the NGO InterEcocentre, Skolivs’ki Beskydy National Park and Vyzhnyts'kyi National Park in Ukraine, the Universities of Lviv and Chernivtse, Dienst Landelijk Gebied (DLG), Large Herbivore Foundation (LHF), Institute of Ecology of the Carpathians (IEC), Vanatori Neamt National Park in Romania and Stacja Badawcza Fauny Karpat in Poland.