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Providing evidence to improve practice

Individual study: The power of genetic monitoring for studying demography, ecology, and genetics of a reintroduced brown bear population

Published source details

De Barba M., Waits L.P., Garton O.E., Genovesi P., Randi E., Mustoni A. & Groff C. (2010) The power of genetic monitoring for studying demography, ecology, and genetics of a reintroduced brown bear population. Molecular Ecology, 19, 3938-3951


This study is summarised as evidence for the intervention(s) shown on the right. The icon shows which synopsis it is relevant to.

Translocate to re-establish or boost populations in native range Terrestrial Mammal Conservation

A study in 1999–2008 in an area of mixed agricultural land, forest, and grassland in the Alps of northern Italy (De Barba et al. 2010) found that following translocation, brown bears Ursus arctos bred successfully in the release area and the population increased, but genetic diversity declined. Three years after the first translocations, there were 10 bears in the area. By nine years after the first translocations, this increased to 27–31 bears. Over this time, 35 cubs had been born. However, genetic diversity declined over time (data reported as allelic richness). In 1999–2002, nine bears were caught in Slovenia and translocated into Trentino, Italy, where the resident population had fallen to around three individuals. In 2002–2008, hair and faecal samples were collected opportunistically and along transects. Samples were also collected from bear carcasses found in the area. DNA from these samples was analysed to identify individuals and to measure genetic diversity.

(Summarised by Paul Gerlach )