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24, chemin de Borde Rouge –Auzeville – CS52627
31326 Castanet Tolosan CEDEX - France

Dernière mise à jour : Mai 2018

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Critical review o f small game restocking schemes

INRA Prod. Anim., 6 (4), 269-275.


INRA IRGM BP 27, 31326 Castanet-Tolosan Cedex

Based on a synopsis of available literature data, this article makes a critical review of the Wild Rabbit, Brown Hare, Grey Partridge and Red Partridge restocking operations carried out in France. A series of circumstances and conditions which gradually reduced the stocks are briefly reminded, the starting point possibly being the introduction of the myxomatosis virus. Comparative releases performed by the Office National de la Chasse (French National Game and Hunting Agency) and a few more isolated studies conducted by INRA make it possible to assess the success rate of these attempts to restore or reinforce natural populations in various contexts. With regard to lagomorpha, beside a number of quantitative data showing the highly variable survival rate of the subjects introduced according to various factors (quality of habitat, time of release, release location setting, animal condition), the emphasis is put on the need to take their social and individual behaviour into account. For partridges, it is recommended that the necessary restocking operations be undertaken in wide geographical areas, so that a sufficient number of pairs can settle and reproduce, and that only local birds be used, to prevent genetic contamination of the naturalstock.

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