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Animal Biodiversity and Conservation. Volume 43.2 (2020) Pages: 221-232

A global review of animal translocation programs

Resende, P. S., Viana-Junior, A. B., Young, R. J., Azevedo, C. S. d.





We performed a bibliometric analysis to investigate the efficiency of release techniques (soft and hard–release), to analyse the characteristics and outcomes of the translocation programs, to identify knowledge gaps, and to provide recommendations. Animal conservation studies involving animal release to the wild increased significantly over the 31 years studied and were more frequently performed with terrestrial mammals than with other taxonomic groups. Most of the studies were performed by researchers from developed countries. Translocations occurred mostly in temperate regions, with almost no translocations occurring in the tropics. Almost 60 % of the studies did not provide information regarding the success or failure of the translocation programs. The most commonly used technique was hard release. Wild–caught specimens were preferred for translocations. Translocation programs were less common for groups like amphibians, fishes, and invertebrates. If criteria for suitable translocation are met, this management tool should also be conducted for tropical threatened species, led by native researchers. Furthermore, criteria for successful translocation should be clearly identified in order to improve future conservation actions.


Bibliometric analysis, Conservation, Hard release, Knowledge gap, Soft release


Resende, P. S., Viana-Junior, A. B., Young, R. J., Azevedo, C. S. d., 2020. A global review of animal translocation programs. Animal Biodiversity and Conservation, 43: 221-232, DOI:

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