The steps to freedom for the Southern Carpathian bison

The gates of the acclimatization enclosure were opened last week for the 8 bison which arrived in July in the Bison Hillock.

The two males and six females which were brought from five reserves in Germany (Wisentgehege SpringeWisentgehege DonaumoosNationalpark Kellerwald-EderseeNationalparkverwaltung Bayerischer Wald and Wisentgehege Hardehausen) will now have 160 hectars of disiduos forests and meadows to explore and get adjusted to their new home in the Southern Carpathians before they enjoy full freedom.

The team effort and process was filmed by our ranger Cătălin Josan.


”The first few months are critical for the newly brought bison, it’s a time when we watch over them and asses together with the veterinarian the best moment to set them free. Like moving to a new home, things can get stressful and you have to see where you get the best food from and where you find shelter”, says ranger coordinator Florin Hălăștăuan.

The bison are resilient and great explorers so they soon cover great areas and build up muscles and feed well, just in time before winter settles in.

Rangers Matei and Danu are keeping a close eye on this group of 8 as well as on the others that have already made the area their own. One group that was made out about 30 individuals now split up in two smaller herds. Both have calves born this year, with one baby only 2-3 weeks old.

”It was a real treat to have the chance of seeing them graze peacefully for about 30 minutes. We were at a distance, but the time we spent with them was precious. We could see herd structures and individual personalities” reported Danu, enthusiastically.

This big group of free bison was captured on video by ranger Matei Miculescu.


Since the first transport in 2014 the bison population grew to over 60 in the Bison Hillock, as they reproduced and did not face recent illnesses. Human contact is limited to insure the bison can thrive in the wild and be part of the natural processes, but direct observation and research is conducted to insure the wellbeing of the animals as well as to create a harmonious relationship with the local community.

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