October 2019. South-Western Carpathians, Romania.
Preparation for data collection from ecological corridors in Romania is in full operation, as WWF Romania’s field experts are actively testing monitoring tools in the field. We have already found some interesting sightings!
One key outcome of ConnectGREEN is the methodology for harmonized data collection across project countries, to define the habitat of large carnivores. In Romania, WWF field experts are preparing to kickoff the monitoring process as soon as the methodology is launched. The methodology will cover a 4-step process: (I) Collection and preparation of input data, namely occurrence data of target species and various environmental variables; (II) habitat suitability modelling; (III) proposal of core areas and stepping stones; (IV) connectivity modelling; and (V) expert discussion and verification of proposed layer. In Autumn 2019, we will begin the first step of this monitoring process.
WWF Romania has purchased the camera traps for Step I of the methodology: collecting input data. The team of experts has been roaming vast pilot area covering 6 counties – ranging from Caraș-Severin to Maramureș County – and preparing future monitoring sites. They have also tested the cameras and found some interesting footage: a curious young roe deer eyeing the hidden ConnectGREEN camera!
The presence of this deer is proof that the ecological corridor is being used and needs to be preserved!
Photo credits: WWF Romania