European bison (Bison bonasus) in Belarus: the state and problems of management


  • Piotr Kozlo The State Research-Production Association “The Scientifically-Practical Centre of The National Academy of Sciences of Belarus for Bioresources”, Minsk


European bison, dual status of subpopulation, management and conservation strategy


The paper summarises results of realization of the 1st stage of “The program for conservation, distribution and use of European bison in Belarus”. The program was theoretically based upon the model of bison metapopulation in Belarus and management strategy considering dual status of its subpopulations. As the main insurance for the gene pool regarded are animals living in nature reserves and national parks while those living in forestries and hunting enterprises are treated as a reserve. Populations that are designated to secure the gene pool are protected according to rules for species listed in Red Book, other populations after reaching maximal foreseen numbers may be hunted. Six new free-living subpopulations of European bison were created between 1994–2005. Numbers of this species (excluding natural mortality and elimination) increased from 347 in 1994 to 1014 individuals in 2010. The question has been raised: what to do with that species saved from extinction? Discussed is the necessity of changes in legislature allowing for the practical management of bison subpopulations outside of nature reserves and national parks.




How to Cite

Kozlo, P. (2011). European bison (Bison bonasus) in Belarus: the state and problems of management. European Bison Conservation Newsletter, 4, 37–44. Retrieved from



Peer-reviewed articles