FOR the first time in 10,000 years, European bison have reproduced in the wild in Spain.
This enormous step in the conservation of this endangered species was driven by a European programme in collaboration with Spanish Fund for the Protection of Wild Animals (FAPAS).
With just 4,000 European bison left worldwide, the birth of the two calfs – named Pipa and Lipion – is vital for the survival of the species.
The European initiative, headed by the Conservation Centre of the European Bison in Spain (EBCC), released 16 bison from the Netherlands and Belgium into the wild around the town of Teverga, in the Asturias region.
While three of the herd died due to the hard winters in the area, the remaining 13 – as well as both infants – are thriving since their introduction to the area in 2012.
The European bison is a historically-significant species to Spain as it features prominently in Paleolithic cave art across the country.