Thoughts on favourable conservation status

I’m not an expert in this area, but in contrast to our politicians I’m interested in our scientists knowledge.

Hypothetically, would it be possible to apply the same thoughts about favourable conservation status on e.g. Arctic fox, Bear, or Red fox as now is done with the Wolf here in Sweden?
That is, some 270 individuals should be sufficient to ensure a viable and healthy population. If not, what is it then that makes the Wolf so unique compared to other species?

I thought that the laws for genetics, natural mortality, possibility to cope with diseases etc. would be rather general when estimating favourable conservation status among different species.

Wolf  near Smedjebacken Sweden 2012

Bear (from hide) at Vargas in Hälsingland Sweden 2013

Arctic fox, Dovre Norway 2014



About Per

Working with Business Intelligence at Capgemini. All other time is devoted to photography with main focus on nature- wildlife and cultural activities.
This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Thoughts on favourable conservation status

  1. nokotahorse says:

    Beautiful photography and a good question Per! I am also not an expert, but to determine the minimum number of individuals for a sustainable population we must look at the total genetic variation within the population. All individuals contribute to the gene pool, so removing individuals because they are close related makes it worse, not better. The smaller the total genetic variation is, the more individuals are needed. If a population is kept at a constant low number like 270 without external infusion, we must rely on genetic mutation, which is slow process if the population is so small. I doubt anyone can confidently estimate what exact number of individuals is needed for a favourable conservation status for any species.

  2. Per says:

    Thank you! I agree with you. The number 270 is only politics, not science based. I’m not looking for an exact number. Even if the genetical status should be good I think that we need at a minimum 500 in a relatively isolated population for a favorable conservation status.

  3. treothe says:

    Between 500 & 600 is the minimum population in a breeding community to avoid inbreading erosion of diversity

  4. Per says:

    Thank you treothe! Just my thoughts also.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s