Status WILD for the wild horses in the Rhodopes

Status WILD for the wild horses in the Rhodopes

Public lecture of Frank Zanderink, ecological expert (The Netherlands)

February 28th 2018, 18.30 hrs.
Faculty of Biology, Sofia University “St.Kliment Ohridski”
(8, Dragan Tsankov Blvd.)

Organizers: ARK Nature Foundation (The Netherlands) and Bulgarian Biodiversity Foundation
In partnership with the Faculty of Biology of Sofia University “St. Kliment Ohridski”

Since a couple of years dozens of horses are freely roaming in the wilderness of the Eastern Rhodopes, south Bulgaria. Beautiful Konik horses, a recreation of the Tarpan, the prehistoric wild horse from the past. These horses deserve to be officially called wild. Wild again. With the Status Wild.

States Wild is the mission and the passion of a Bulgarian-Dutch team, who is working on the restoration of the wildlife in the Eastern Rhodopes since 2011.

In his public lecture “Status WILD for the wild horses in the Rhodopes” Frank Zanderink, an ecological expert from the Netherlands will present the benefits of Status Wild for the nature and the people in the Rhodopes and Bulgaria, as well as in Europe. This lecture will be an opening the new season of the series “Lectures on Biodiversity conservation”, organized for 12th year by the Bulgarian Biodiversity Foundation at the Faculty of Biology of Sofia University.

The status “Wild” means that the national and regional governments acknowledge the free living Konik horses as actual wild living animals. These horses will become with the same legal-status as red deer, hares, roe deer have. When the Status Wild for these horses has been realised, Bulgaria becomes the first country within the EU, Europe and worldwide where the Status Wild has been giving to former domestic animal species. Many other countries are already interested in following the steps being made in Bulgaria. Allowing the Status Wild for Konik will be a positive moment for the whole of Europe and change the way Europeans look at the wild living horses.

Check out the Status Wild website:
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Looking forward to seeing you on February 28th!

About Frank Zanderink
Frank was born in Eindhoven, the Netherlands and studied tropical forestry and wildlife ecology on the Agricultural University of Wageningen, the Netherlands.

In Zambia he worked as a Conservation officer for several years and since 2004 he is working for ARK Nature, a Dutch NGO focussing on nature restoration. For ARK he worked as a project leader for nature restoration projects in the Netherlands, Latvia, Croatia, Bulgaria and recently also in Ukraine and Germany. In most of these projects he was working with large herbivores, and especially with wild living horses.

To his understanding and conviction wild horses and wild cattle are crucial for a natural mosaic like landscape that ensures a high biodiversity. And having these animals as key figures for wild nature, these animals should be wild as well, without human intervention like it once was before!



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