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Some of the best and most successful rewinding projects from across the globe - TNK Green

Some of the best and most successful rewinding projects from across the globe

What is rewilding?

Rewilding is a form of environmental restoration that include multiple disciplines and can include reforestation, ecological rehabilitation, and re-establishing keystone species into degraded ecosystems.

All across the globe, environmental scientists are testing strategies for rehabilitating and restoring ecologically degraded environments to their former glory. This benefits the ecosystem’s biodiversity and can even restore the natural water cycle and soil health.


Why is it necessary?

The concept of rewilding is not new. Ecologists and Biologists have been advocating for decades, but the idea has gained momentum in recent years to protect and restore highly degraded landscapes due to human interaction. Biodiversity across the globe is facing a crisis; one way to repair this is to give more space back to the wild.

Keystone species have become renowned for managing ecosystems. Whether wolves, bison, or beavers, these species create a cascade of biodiversity restoration that benefits the entire surrounding ecology.


Some noteworthy Non-Profit organizations

Knepp Wilding (UK)

Based on a 3,500-acre parcel of land just 16 miles from Gatwick airport was previously farmland owned by the Burrel family. In 2001 Knepp received Countryside Stewardship funding from the UK government to restore Repton Park in the center of the farm. Taking a ‘process-led’, non-goal-orientated approach inspired by Dutch ecologist Dr Frans Vera and his ground-breaking book Grazing Ecology and Forest History. Since its conception, Knepp has become a leading light in the conservation movement and has yielded some astonishing success in a relatively short period of time.

For more information, visit their website at: https://knepp.co.uk/


Mossy earth (Europe)

Established in 2017 by Matthew Davies and Duarte de Zoeten, this crowd-funded non-profit organization is involved in more than 45 rewilding projects across the globe. Funded solely by membership subscriptions with a minimum monthly subscription of only £5, Mossey Earth and its partners work tirelessly to create a positive impact on the environment regardless of where the projects are based. From Reforesting Iceland to reintroducing European bison in the Carpathian mountains to re-establishing Kelp forests, they are committed to transparency, staying scientifically informed, and employing the best ecologist and scientist to assist in all their projects.

For more information, you can visit their website at:  https://www.mossy.earth/ or find more updates and more information on their YouTube channel at: https://www.youtube.com/@MossyEarth


Samara Karoo (RSA)

Founded in 1997, Samara Karoo is a private game reserve set on 67,000 acres of ‘born-again’ semi-arid wilderness in the Great Karoo in South Africa. Regarded as a Global Biodiversity Hotspot, Samara has steadily increased their reach and restoration footprint intending to expand the reserve to 3 million acres. Having successfully reintroduced 60 mammals, including the South African Big Five, and gradually restoring the degraded landscape with native plants, this reserve has become the leading example of rewilding in Southern Africa. Run and funded by responsible tourism  Samara have three intimate lodges that welcome only 34 guests at a time for slow, meaningful, and exceptional safari encounters.

For more info, you can visit their website at: https://www.samara.co.za/


Inspirational projects from across the globe

Reforesting Iceland

You won’t say it by looking at Iceland today, but before colonization by the Vikings during the late ninth century, the island was believed to have once been covered up to 40% in Birch forest. Unfortunately, due to overlogging and overgrazing, the Island forest cover was almost totally destroyed, covering a mere 1.5% f the island today. Mossey Earth has started a reforestation project in collaboration with the Icelandic government and Forest Service in a region of Southern Iceland called Skridhufell. Up to present, a total of 60,000 trees have been planted with the hope to extend this across at least 5% of the island surface and eventually a wider restoration project in the future that includes a wetland region in the highlands.

For more information: https://www.mossy.earth/projects/reforesting-iceland


Europe Bison reintroduction

The European Bison is one of two extant species of bison alongside the American bison and was once found across Europe. In the early 20th century due to sustained hunting and habitat loss saw its range continually shrink across the centuries until the last wild European bison was shot in the Caucasus in 1927. There were only 54 European bison left alive, all in captivity, and only due to captive breeding programs were they able to be reintroduced into their previous natural ranges. Over the last ten years, the estimated number of free-roaming individuals has steadily increased from 2579 to approximately 7000 individuals across the Southern Carpathians in Romania and the Rhodope Mountains in Bulgaria. No longer considered a vulnerable species, this is a success story of bringing an animal back from the brink of extinction while restoring the natural ecology they were once apart of

For more information: https://rewildingeurope.com/impact-stories/european-bison/


Yellowstone wolf reintroduction

Yellowstone stands as a beacon for keystone species reintroduction and the benefits of rewilding. One of the world’s oldest and most studied rewilding projects was the reintroduction of wolves in 1995 after a 50-year absence in the region. In the 1920s, wolves were eradicated from Yellowstone, together with other carnivores like cougars and bears, by the US government in an effort to ‘tame the wilderness.’ Unfortunately, this action had unforeseen consciences and with no predators to control the elk, overgrazing soon led to a decline in the beaver population and significantly altered the ecosystem. Since the project’s inception, the wolf population has steadily increased and stabilized. With fewer elk the young saplings had more time to grow, restoring forested areas, and with the trees came the beavers further enhancing the natural ecology of the park.

For more information:  https://www.yellowstone.org/wolf-project/


UK Beaver reintroduction

A very recent entry to the field of rewilding, the Norfolk trust, together with various partners, successfully released a pair of Eurasian beavers into an enclosed environment in north Norfolk in the UK, the first beavers in the UK in 400 years. Updates as of January 2022 state that the beavers have already built six dams across the two channels they have access to, creating deep pools that slow down the flow of the river, trapping sediment and improving water clarity downstream. With initial positive results, the project still has some way to go to reintroduce beavers across the greater area.

For more information: https://norfolkriverstrust.org/beavers/


Reintroducing Jaguars in Argentina

In 2018, at a critical and uncertain time for the future of the jaguar, four leading international organizations – the  United Nations Development Programme, World Wildlife Fund, Wildlife Conservation Society, and Panthera – and 14 jaguar range states, including Argentina, launched the 2030 Jaguar Conservation Roadmap for the Americas, presented at the Conference of Parties (COP) 14 of the Convention on Biological Diversity  The jaguar was identified as a species of the highest importance and since 2008 Rewilding Argentina have launched four projects across the country to rewild the natural environment.

For more information: https://www.rewildingargentina.org/home-eng/



With so many projects across the globe, rewilding is a pivotal part of natural rehabilitation and conservation. Every project and its success proves rewilding effectiveness if implemented and managed by a dedicated team of experts and engaging the local community.

But with so much work left to do, we should not get complacent and, wherever possible, support any local rewilding projects or efforts by others to do so.

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