Forest Science for people and societal challenges The 90th “Marin Drăcea” INCDS Anniversary

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The research team carries out specific activities on monitoring and management of fauna and salmonids at the national level, conservation, management and restoration of species and habitats.


Ionescu Georgeta

Senior researcher I, Head of Hunting Section SCDEP Brașov

Responsible Research Team (E4)


Areas of Interest: Wildlife Conservation and Management

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The main objective of the research team consists in the study of wild fauna in the context of the development of society and the mitigation of this impact on wild animal populations in Romania. The results of scientific research constitute a basis for establishing wildlife conservation and management measures. In the last 20 years, Romania has seen major changes in society, moving from a system where the state controls everything, to a system of private property with or without financial resources. Under these conditions, the main pressure was on natural resources, including wildlife.

Objectives – Research directions

  • the development and implementation of genetic and genomic monitoring techniques within fauna populations to ensure the long-term conservation of species in Romania;
  • development and implementation of molecular ecology and landscape ecology methods for conserving connectivity and ecological networks and biodiversity;
  • scientific substantiation of intelligent solutions for the digitization of hunting management and ensuring a rapid response to societal challenges and climate change
  • reducing the impact of the transport infrastructure on the movement of species by implementing the latest generation techniques (virtual fence, avc);
  • developing conservation policies and environmental strategies to ensure sustainable development;
  • the development of studies on the ecology and ethology of species with the potential to transfer the results into practice;
  • development and implementation of mammal species reintroduction techniques;
  • management of species of hunting and conservation interest;
  • management and ecological reconstruction of riparian habitats;
  • development of management and action plans for species and protected natural areas;
  • increasing the hunting and fishing potential through intensive breeding and the development of technologies for reproduction and breeding in captivity of species of hunting interest and salmonids in order to repopulate hunting grounds and mountain waters;
  • conflict management with wildlife populations in the context of societal development;
  • consulting, technical assistance and impact studies on wildlife in Romania;
  • solutions for management and management of household waste in conflict areas with carnivore populations;
  • biodiversity management in the Romanian natura 2000 network (fauna management in the natura 2000 sites, the ecological network for large carnivores in the natura 2000 sites;
  • management of conflicts between fauna and human activities (management of household waste from areas with conflicts, avoiding fragmentation of habitats through infrastructure development, reduction of conflict areas with special conservation measures for protected European species).









Within the E4 research team, 3 Senior researchers I, 1 Senior resercher II, 8 Junior researcher, 3 Researchers, 2 Researchers trainee, 3 sub-engineers, 1 technician and 25 experts temporarily employed on projects within the research team are working.

Research infrastructure and services

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Research infrastructure


  • Animal genetics laboratory to determine genetic variability and gene flow for fauna species, by PCR sequencing;
  • Infrastructure specific to wildlife capture, tranquilization and relocation activities (box traps, cage traps, leghold traps for carnivores, herbivore nets and traps for aquatic mammals, tranquilizer kit, transport cages, special vehicles, trailers and ATVs) ;
  • Wildlife monitoring equipment (GPS transmitters for large carnivores, rattle transmitters for aquatic mammals, receivers, data analysis software; camera traps, video cameras, GPS, portable ultrasound, binoculars, night vision, motor boats , sonar, special machines for radio telemetry, snake cameras, field equipment;
  • Infrastructure to manage conflicts between human activities and wildlife (electric fences, camera traps);
  • Equipment specific to salmonid management activity (electric fishing system, sonar, GPS, pneumatic boat);
  • Specific equipment for increasing the potential of hunting and fishing activities (binoculars, night vision, computers, data processing software, peripherals: printer, scanner, field equipment).

Research services


  • Realization of digitization solutions for hunting management;
  • Elaboration and implementation of action plans for species of community interest;
  • Tranquility and relocation with fauna species;
  • Elaboration of studies on the anthropogenic impact on Natura 2000 sites;
  • Inventory and mapping of fauna of community interest (carnivores, herbivores, semi-aquatic mammals);
  • Genetic analysis of biological samples in order to determine genetic parameters for mammal species in Romania;
  • Assessing the degree of fragmentation, the functional connectivity of ecological corridor networks and establishing measures to rebuild connectivity and reduce the impact of transport infrastructure;
  • Consultancy, technical assistance and impact studies on wildlife in Romania;
  • Solutions for management and management of household waste in conflict areas with carnivore populations;
  • Carrying out studies on the ecology and ethology of species with the potential to transfer the results into practice.

Relevant projects

  • Genomic BIodiversity Knowledge for Resilient Ecosystems (CA18134). Period 2019 – 2023. Working Group Coordinator (WG2)


  • Restoration and restoration of eutrophic marshes and forests from Prejmer and Harman – LIFE FOR MARSH (LIFE11NATRO828). European Union-Life +Natura. Period: 2012 – 2017. Value 1,230,000 Euro.


  • Functional connectivity and ecological sustainability of European ecological networks: a case study with the brown bear (BearConnect) (Contract 96/2016). Biodiversa. Period: 2017 – 2020. Value 211,000 Euro. Work Package Coordinator (WP5).


  • Preventing Animal-Vehicle Collisions Demonstration of Best Practices targeting priority species in SE Europe. European Union-Life +Natura (LIFE17NAT/IT/000464). Period: 2018 – 2023. Value 1,455,000 Euro.


  • Sustainable forest management adapted to climate change and societal challenges FORCLIMSOC – Project: New scientific foundations for the development of intelligent solutions regarding the sustainable management of populations of hunting interest and the conservation of their biodiversity (PN23090304). ANCSI CORE PROGRAM. Period: 2023 – 2026. Value 27846000 Lei.


  • Sustainable management of forests to ensure biodiversity and the provision of multiple ecosystem services under the conditions of socio-economic and environmental changes – BIOSERV – Project: Analysis of the spatial and temporal components of the connectivity between the protected areas of the Southern group of the Eastern Carpathians (PN 19070601). ANCSI CORE PROGRAM. Period: 2019 – 2022. Value 1,000,000 Euro.


  • Determining the conservation status of the grouse (Tetrao urogalus) population in Romania and establishing the necessary measures for species management (13.3). RNP ROMSILVA. Period 2013 – 2015. Value 49,500 Euro.


  • Implementation of the national action plan for the conservation of the brown bear population in Romania. Large Infrastructure Operational Program (POIM) 2014-2020. Period: 2021-2023. Value 10,000,0000 Euro.


  • Monitoring the state of conservation of the bear population in the Carpathians de Curbura and the Western Carpathians. Value. ANCSI CORE PROGRAM PN09460210. Period: 2012-2014. Value 300,000 Euro


  • Improving the conservation status of the beaver through the lens of restoring the entire area of historical distribution. ANCSI CORE PROGRAM PN09460220. Period: 2015. Value 111,000 Euro.


  • Mapping the natural and cultural trophic supply correlated with bear adaptability reflected in population genetics. ANCSI CORE PROGRAM PN09460314. Period: 2015. Value 111,000 Euro


  • The sustainable management of forests to ensure biodiversity and the provision of multiple ecosystem services under the conditions of socio-economic and environmental changes – BIOSERV – Project: Structural and functional analysis of vegetation and aquatic ecosystems in the upper and middle basin of the Olt River. ANCSI CORE PROGRAM 19070603. Period: 2019-2022. Value: 1,000,000 Euro.


  • The sustainable management of forests to ensure biodiversity and the provision of multiple ecosystem services under the conditions of socio-economic and environmental changes – BIOSERV – Project: Services offered by ecosystems populated with fauna species of hunting and conservation interest. ANCSI CORE PROGRAM 19070602. Period: 2019-2022. Value: 1,000,000 Euro.


  • Completing the level of knowledge of biodiversity by implementing the system for monitoring the state of conservation of species and habitats of community interest in Romania and reporting based on Article 17 of the Habitats Directive 92/43/CEE (120009). Service contracted from IBB with funding from the Large Infrastructure Operational Program (POIM). Period: 2019-2022. Value: 800,000 Euro.


  • Research on the protection and development of hunting resources in order to increase the efficiency of the management of wild fauna populations with economic value in the plain area (180/2014). UEFISCDI. Period: 2014-2017. Value 326,000 Euro.


  • Research on increasing the efficiency of the management of small game populations in the Western Plains (13.4). RNP ROMSILVA. Period: 2013-2016. Value 46,000 Euro

Recent publications


  • Lucas, P. M., Thuiller, W., Talluto, M. V., Polaina, E., Albrecht, J., Selva, N., Fedorca, A, Ionescu, G., Ionescu, O., Jurj, R., Sirbu, G et al. Including biotic interactions in species distribution models improves the understanding of species niche: a case of study with the brown bear in Europe. bioRxiv 2023 Pages 2023.03.10.532098. DOI: 10.1101/2023.03.10.532098.


  • Dutta, T., De Barba, M., Selva, N., Fedorca, A., Maiorano, L., Thuiller, W., Zedrosser, A., Signer, J., Pflüger, F., Frank, , Lucas, P.M, Balkenhol, N. An objective approach to select surrogate species for connectivity conservation. 2023. Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution. Accepted for publication


  • Ilinca, E., Fedorca, A. (autor corespondent), Baciu, I., Fedorca, M., Ionescu G. 2022. The road ahead on implementing genetic monitoring of multispecies in the Carpathians. Land. Land2022, 11(12), 2222;


  • Baciu, I., Fedorca, A. (autor principal), Ionescu, G. 2022. Noninvasive Genetics Knowledge from the Brown Bear Populations to Assist Biodiversity Conservation. Diversity. Vol. 14(2), 121. Doi: 3390/d14020121. WOS:000777462100001. (IF = 2.465).


  • García-Sánchez, M.P., González-Ávila, S., Solana-Gutiérrez, J., Popa, M., Jurj, R., Ionescu, G., Ionescu, O., Fedorca, M., Fedorca, A. (autor principal și autor corespondent). 2021. Sex-specific connectivity modelling for brown bear conservation in the Carpathian Mountains. Landscape Ecology. Vol. 37: 1311–1329. Doi: 1007/s10980-021-01367-8. WOS:000720615000002. (IF = 3.851).


  • Fedorca, A. (autor principal), Ciocirlan, E., Pasca, C., Fedorca, M., Gridan, A., Ionescu, G. 2021. Genetic structure of Eurasian beaver in Romania: insights after two decades from the reintroduction. European Journal of Wildlife Research. Vol. 67 (104). Doi:1007/s10344-021-01546-7. WOS:000720717300001. (IF = 1.983).


  • Fedorca, A. (autor principal), Fedorca, M., Ionescu, O., Jurj, R., Ionescu, G., Popa, M. 2021. Sustainable landscape planning to mitigate wildlife-vehicle collisions. Land Vol. 10(7), 737. Doi: 3390/land10070737. WOS:000676274000001. (IF = 3.398).


  • Fedorca, M., Ionescu, O., Șofletea, N., Fedorca, A., Ionescu, G., Curtu, A.L. 2020. Assessing the genetic structure of capercaillie in Romania. Annals of Forest Research. 63 (2): 15-26. Doi: 10.15287/afr.2020.2025. WOS:000606323200002. (IF = 1.516).


  • Fedorca, A. (autor principal), Popa, M., Jurj, R., Ionescu, G., Ionescu, O., Fedorca, M. 2020. Assessing the regional landscape connectivity for multispecies to coordinate on-the-ground needs for mitigating linear infrastructure impact in Brasov – Prahova region. Journal for Nature Conservation. Vol. 58 (125903). Doi: 1016/j.jnc.2020.125903. WOS:000599525600001. (IF = 2.831).


  • Ericson, H. S., Fedorca, A., Toderas, I., Hegyeli, Z., Plis, K., Dykyy, I., Jedrzejewska, B., Ionescu, G., Fedorca, M., Iacolina, L., Stronen, A.V. 2019. Genome-wide profiles indicate wolf population connectivity within the eastern Carpathian Mountains. Genetics. Vol. 148 (1):33-39. Doi: 1007/s10709-019-00083-1. WOS:000504147300001. (IF = 1.186).


  • Fedorca, A. (autor principal), Russo, I.R.M., Ionescu, O., Ionescu, G., Popa, M., Fedorca, M., Curtu, A.L., Sofletea, N., Tabor, G., Bruford, M.W. 2019. Inferring fine-scale spatial structure of the brown bear (Ursus arctos) population in the Carpathians before infrastructure development. Scientific Reports. Vol. 9 (949410). Doi: 1038/s41598-019-45999-y. WOS:000473294100081. (IF = 3.998)


  • Fedorca, M., Ionescu, G., Ciocirlan, E., Sofletea, N., Fedorca, A. (autor corespondent). 2018. A simple automated approach to obtain DNA from capercaillie, brown bear and wolf faeces. Conservation Genetic Resources. Vol. 12: 33–36. Doi: 1007/s12686-018-1061-9. WOS:000520138500009. (IF = 1.154)



  • Cotovelea, A. (autor principal), Ionescu, O., Şofletea, N., Ionescu, G., Jurj, R., Sîrbu, G., Popa, M., Fedorca, M., Mariş, C., Curtu, A.L. 2015. Testing the influence of habituation on genetic structure of brown bear (Ursus arctos). Annals of Forest Research. Vol. 58 (1): 81-90. Doi:15287/afr.2015.355. WOS:000354005500007. (IF = 0.741)


  • Cazacu, C., Adamescu, M.C., Ionescu, O., Ionescu, G., Jurj, R., Popa, M., Cazacu, R., Cotovelea, A. 2014. Mapping trends of large and medium size carnivores of conservation interest in Romania. Annals of Forest Research. Vol. 57 (1): 97-107. Doi: 15287/afr.2014.170. WOS:000340352300010 (IF = 0.418)