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Hybridization in the alpine population and connection corridor: define protocols, management actions, and teams of interventions

Hybridization between wolf and dog is a source of justified concern and the scientific community considers it as a severe threat to wolf conservation. This action provides the preparation for the application of urgent conservation measures (applied in Action C5) to prevent loss of genetic identity and control the wide spreading cases of hybridization (present in the northern Apennine) into the alpine wolf population.

This action will have a special role in the ecological corridor of the Piedmont-Liguria Apennine Mountains (“Piedmont-Ligurian Apennine Corridor and Urban Project Area”), which connect the Italian Apennine wolf population to the Alpine one. In the 90s, this corridor allowed the natural recolonization of the Alps. Today, it is also the connection with the principal introgression area in Tuscany, where we now see hybrids dispersing into the alpine population.

Few steps will be needed:

  • Genetic-scientific workshop to define a common international genetic protocol for detection of hybridization for the alpine population.
  • Workshop in Piedmont to define a common management and intervention protocol for hybrid removal and to find agreement at national and international levels.
  • Definition of the local teams of intervention for hybrid capture and removal or sterilization.
  • Communication Campaign and dialogue tables with stakeholders in the Apennine corridor to agree on hybrid management approaches.
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