Animal Biodiversity and Conservation. Volume 35.2 (2012) Pages: 189-196

Spatial behaviour and survival of translocated wild brown hares

Fischer, C., Tagand, R.



The fragility of many populations of brown hares in Western Europe is a concern for managers, hunters and naturalists. We took advantage of a locally high density population to use wild individuals to restock areas where the species had disappeared or was close to disappearing. The aim of the project was to assess the evolution of the spatial behaviour after release using radio–tracking. Over 150 wild brown hares were translocated, one third of which were fitted with radio collars. In addition, fifteen individuals were radio–tagged and released back into the source population as a control. Most individuals settled in less than two months and their seasonal home range, once settled, was similar to that observed in the source population. Mean duration of tracking was not significantly different between the two groups. Moreover, two years after the last translocation, tagged individuals can still be observed, but most hares present are not tagged, which indicates natural reproduction of the released individuals. The translocation of wild individuals thus appears to give encouraging results.


Brown hare, Lepus europaeus, Translocation, Home range, Survival, Monitoring


Fischer, C., Tagand, R., 2012. Spatial behaviour and survival of translocated wild brown hares. Animal Biodiversity and Conservation, 35: 189-196, DOI:



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