Tatra Mountains as a part of wildE project

At recent meeting at the foothills of the Tatra Mountains the wildE project managers and relevant stakeholders spent several days and discussed a wide spectrum of subjects

The Tatra Mountains is the important partner of the wildE project. This Mountains includes the highest peaks of the Carpathian range and offer an exceptional opportunity to study and appreciate a pristine mountain environment. Straddling the border between Slovakia and Poland, these mountains are a vital part of the NATURA 2000 network. The Tatra Mountains feature a dual-national park system: Slovakia’s TANAP and Poland’s TPN. TANAP covers 73,800 hectares, with approximately 30,703 hectares under strict protection. TPN spans around 21,000 hectares, with about 11,514 hectares strictly preserved. Together, these parks create a continuous strictly protected wilderness area of about 42,000 hectares. This significant conservation area highlights the Tatras’ importance in preserving biodiversity and natural landscapes in Central Europe.

Why the wildE meeting was hosted in the Tatras? 

The wildE meeting took place in the Tatras, because Tatras are located on the territory of Slovakia and Poland, and both countries together with a group of other partners are implementing this project.

Recent meeting of the wildE project partners connects Tatra Mountains in Slovakia and Poland by implementing climate-smart rewilding strategies within the park’s unique ecosystem

Research, local experts and stakeholders

Recent meeting of the wildE project partners connects Tatra Mountains in Slovakia and Poland by implementing climate-smart rewilding strategies within the park’s unique ecosystem. By collaborating with local experts and stakeholders, wildE conducts in-depth research and practical applications aimed at enhancing biodiversity and addressing climate change impacts specific to the region.

The meeting had an ambition confirmed that the partnership allows Tatra National Parks to serve as a critical site for testing and demonstrating effective rewilding solutions. That process can be scaled and adapted across Europe, contributing to the broader goals of the wildE project and the EU’s environmental objectives.

What is needed?

A cohesive, cross-border rewilding vision would facilitate coordinated management, ensuring ecological integrity across the entire Tatra range. This alignment would enhance habitat connectivity and biodiversity while fostering sustainable tourism and local community engagement. By bridging the gap between Slovak and Polish conservation efforts, the Tatra Mountains could serve as a model for transboundary wilderness protection, demonstrating how collaborative approaches can address environmental challenges and promote regional ecological health.

Common rewilding vision is missing 

Uniqueness of Tatra Mountains possess immense rewilding potential, being one of Europe’s most ecologically significant regions. As a transboundary protected area, it includes two national parks both with large already protect fragments of wilderness. This situation further on significantly increase potential and capacity to become large rewilded areas in Central Europe.

However, the lack of a unified Slovak-Polish rewilded vision limits the implementation of this potential. Currently each country independently manages its park, leading to inconsistent conservation strategies and fragmented efforts from the perspective of rewilding.

Dutch Film team in the Tatras, Slovakia 0010.jpg
Mass tourism presents an enormous challenge in the Tatra Mountains

Mass tourism is challenge

Mass tourism presents an enormous challenge in the Tatra Mountains, a region renowned for its pristine natural beauty and biodiversity. The influx of tourists, particularly during peak seasons, places immense pressure on the local ecosystems. Trails become overcrowded, leading to soil erosion and damage to fragile plant life. Wildlife is disturbed by the constant human presence, which can disrupt natural behaviors and habitats.

Additionally, the infrastructure required to accommodate large numbers of visitors—such as hotels, roads, and waste management systems—further strains the environment. Increased litter, pollution, and the risk of forest fires are significant concerns. The Tatras’ delicate balance between nature and tourism is under threat, necessitating stringent management strategies.

Effective solutions in Tatra Mountains could include promoting sustainable tourism practices, limiting visitor numbers, and enhancing environmental education. By addressing these challenges, the Tatras can preserve their unique landscapes and biodiversity for future generations while still welcoming tourists

Role of the WildE 

By evaluating the potential impacts of rewilding in Tatra Mountains on carbon sequestration, biodiversity enhancement, and socio-economic factors, wildE contributes valuable insights to inform conservation policies and practices across Europe. Through its concerted efforts, WildE not only helps protect European rewilded areas but also fosters resilience in the face of environmental challenges, ensuring the continued existence of these vital ecosystems for generations to come. 


In summary, the WildE project serves as a pioneering endeavour at the intersection of climate action and biodiversity conservation. Through its focus on climate-smart rewilding strategies, WildE aims to restore ecosystems, mitigate climate change impacts, and preserve biodiversity. By uniting scientific research, practical implementation, and stakeholder collaboration, the project strives to achieve holistic solutions that address the urgent challenges facing our planet. WildE represents a vital step forward in fostering resilience and sustainability in the face of environmental crises.

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