with eyes open wide
This is an interesting idea that I have written about before. This reserve is located in La Alamedilla, Spain and they are focusing on bringing back a type of large cattle that went extinct in the 1600’s.
The article really just briefly talks about the work on this reserve. The author spends most of his time talking about the controversy around the “rewilders” – those who advocate rewilding initiatives.
I’m all for making things more natural, but some proponents of rewilding are a bit extreme, in my opinion. Take this comment by Staffan Widstrand (quoted from below linked article):
Rewilders say they are too impatient to wait for controlled experiments to be set up. Science is not their goal, they say, though scientists are welcome to come and study.
“Our task is to make Europe a wilder place,” said Mr. Widstrand. “Our task is not numbers and spreadsheets and Ph.D’s.”
That’s a bit frightening, no? It also seems very reckless and negligent to drop wild animals off in a completely new habitat and say, “Good luck!” Images of The Hunger Games shows up in my mind.
I agree with the researchers on this one. This really shouldn’t be an uncontrolled experiment. More for the animal’s sake than anything, how can you ensure that you aren’t leading them to their death? There needs to be better research around these ideas before the gate is opened.