Reintroduction as a Conservation Tool

What is reintroduction? 

The reintroduction of species simply means what it sounds like – deliberately putting species back into the wild in an area where there once were commonly found. The animals that are being released back into their natural habitat are, the majority of the time, released from captivity. Often, species are bred in captivity as a conservation effort to increase their natural population sizes to prevent extinction.

A species will be reintroduced to an area where they were previously wiped out from, for numerous reasons such as excessive hunting, etc. The species will only be reintroduced to the area if the habitat still remains suitable for their survival – in other words, the habitat can’t be polluted or lacking essential resources needed.

Reintroduction can be called re-establishment in some cases by ecologists and conservationists as they see that the native species are being put back into their natural habitat to ‘re-establish’ themselves in their historical range once again.

Reintroduction is an important conservation tool as it allows species that were once extinct in the wild or critically endangered, to roam in their natural areas once again, adding to biodiversity and giving our future generations the chance to experience these species first-hand, rather than just read about them in books or see them in old pictures.

Examples of reintroduced species: 

There are a large variety of examples for species that have been reintroduced into the wild for the purpose of conservation. These examples include; White-Tailed Sea Eagles in Ireland, Eurasian Beaver in the U.K., Canadian Goose in Canada, Whooping Crane in Florida, Trumpeter Swan in Canada and Grey Wolves in Yellowstone Park – these are among the hundreds of other species that have been reintroduced to their historical ranges.

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