Rewilding Europe

Retezat National Park, Romania - Daniel Hotz


An exciting new partnership is set to give Rewilding Europe a major boost in its efforts to make Europe a wilder place. ERF will provide £9 million (around €10.4 million euros) in funding over the next three years.

This will primarily support and scale up work in Rewilding Europe’s portfolio of 10 rewilding landscapes, focusing on amplifying conservation and restoration impact. The funding will also be used to leverage additional funding.

Current Rewilding Landscapes include;

  • Danube Delta (Ukraine, Romania and Moldova)
  • Southern Carpathians (Romania)
  • Velebit Mountain (Croatia)
  • Central Apennines (Italy)
  • Rhodope Mountains (Bulgaria)
  • Oder Delta (Germany and Poland)
  • Iberian Highlands (Spain)
  • Swedish Lapland (Sweden)
  • Affric Highlands (Scotland)
  • Greater Côa Valley (Portugal)

The new funding will strengthen the capacity of Rewilding Europe’s landscape teams and increase the number of rewilding interventions they are able to carry out. The teams will work to further increase ecological resilience and functionality within their landscapes, for example, by reflooding and restoring the water dynamics of wetlands, rewetting peatlands, enhancing natural grazing with large herbivores to create highly biodiverse mosaic landscapes, and supporting non-intervention management with local partners and authorities.

It will also support wildlife comeback in these landscapes and across Europe through the work of Rewilding Europe’s European Wildlife Comeback Fund, which began supporting releases in 2023. The funding will support at least 10 reintroductions per year of keystone species, with a focus on;

  • Large herbivores such as European bison and Przewalski’s horses,
  • Carnivores such as Eurasian and Iberian lynx,
  • Scavengers such as cinereous and griffon vultures, and
  • A variety of other species from various taxonomic groups, such as raptors, beavers, small mammals, and even insects such as dung beetles.

This work will benefit nature and people and demonstrate that practical rewilding is possible at scale, inspiring others to join the rewilding movement. This is vital if we are to realise the huge potential of rewilding and the wide range of benefits that it offers. The funding will also be used to support the necessary core functions of Rewilding Europe central team.

Rewilding Europe Executive Director Frans Schepers said “This is very significant funding, and we are deeply grateful to the Ecological Restoration Fund for the trust they have placed in us. It will help us take a major step forward in achieving the objectives set out in our “Strategy 2030”. This is a tremendous opportunity to increase the scope and impact of our rewilding work across Europe, support our landscape partners, and upscale the European rewilding movement, which is good news for nature, climate and people.”