Wildlife Research and Conservation

Registration №

LIFE19 NAT/SK/001069


LIFE+, Nature and Biodiversity



BROZ - conservation association (SK) ALKA Wildlife (CZ) Polskie Towarzystwo Ochrony Przyrody “Salamandra” (PL) State Nature Conservancy of the Slovak Republic (SK) National Zoological Garden Bojnice (SK) Comenius University Bratislava (SK)



Target species

European ground squirrel (Spermophillus citellus)

Target area

Slovakia, Poland, the Czech Republic


Czechia, Slovakia, Poland

Project focus:

The project is to contribute to the active protection of habitats of the endangered European ground squirrel species in selected localities in Slovakia, the Czech Republic and Poland.

In Slovakia, in most localities in the Alpine and Pannonian regions, the quality of the European ground squirrel population, as well as its habitats, was assessed as unsatisfactory or even poor. The reason is usually the extinction of the habitat caused by a change in the management of the site (especially the abandonment of livestock grazing in the country). The situation is similar in the Czech Republic, in Poland the ground squirrel became extinct in the 1980s, the successful reintroduction of individuals from Slovakia has managed to settle more localities, but the overall population is poor.

Main goals of the project:

  1. Restoration of habitats – cleaning of sites from raids, introduction of grazing

  2. Strengthening the European ground squirrel population – securing a food base (sowing suitable plants, supporting insect species, planting fruit trees), caring for individual colonies, diverting the forward pressure by supporting other animal species

  3. Reintroduction of ground squirrels to suitable sites where they have become extinct in the recent past

  4. Cooperation with local interest groups, owners and users in the protection of the target species

  5. Replication and transfer of project results

  6. Raising public awareness of European ground squirrel protection.