Thursday, April 10, 2014

Some Estonian scientists recognize jackal´s natural colonization of the country

by Ovidiu C Banea

The third hunted jackal in Estonia has led to a number of natural scientists of the opinion that this species may have reached Estonia in a natural way, and that crowding as alien species can not be justified.

Estonian TV news

Zoologist Matti Masing is the first Estonian scientist who said that jackal does not cause major ecological disturbances to ecosystems and according to studies and reports from other countries, there were no reported dangers, referring to the third specimen killed in Parnu County in western Estonia on December 9, 2013. 
Zoologist Alexei Turovski said the Jackal was not settled in, and that "we would have more wolves and jackal crowding is more justified."
Natural colonization of the country is subject of discussions in Estonia, human introduced species hypothesis being now on second place.
Estonia's current official position is that the Jackal poses a threat to ground-nesting birds and small mammals, and may thus endanger the protected species. In September 2013 the government issued a decree allowing the hunting of the species, considered as being alien. 
Hunting of Canis aureus in Estonia is still allowed in base of the recent decree during 1st Oct - 30th March period.
When hunting is performed on jackal territorial groups, after missing of the alfa pair, jackals could increase their number due to interaction between young adults of adiacent groups as in case of foxes (more about territoriality, here)
The hunting of the first two specimens of Canis aureus in Estonia occurred in February and August 2013 (here).

BALTICA 2013, Matsalu National Park Reserve, 1st winter jackal survey in Estonia (TV)