Reforesting the Southern Carpathians

Healing areas ravaged by illegal clear cuts in the last remaining old growth forests of Europe.

Under Threat

Romania's Carpathian Mountains are home to some of Europe's last remaining pristine and truly wild forests.

These old forests are a national treasure and wealth of biodiversity but they are still being logged, often illegally!

Time to act

Although there is rising awareness about the dramatic situation of some of the last old-growth forest in Europe, action needs to be taken now, as logging continues to destroy these precious areas.

This means protecting the old growth as well as reforesting clear cut areas to avoid soil erosion on a catastrophic scale.

Some background...

In a strange twist of fate, Eastern Europe’s communist history helped this area remain untouched and wild for so long.

Post War Romania

Soviet occupation following World War II led to the formation of a communist People's Republic in 1947, and a large push for the nationalization of Romania's forests. As a result, and under the new leadership of Nicolae Ceauşescu, Romania began improving its logging infrastructure and diversifying its tree species from mostly deciduous trees to fast growing Norway Spruce to expand the country's yield of wood.
In the meantime, wildlife in Romania's forests increased significantly, mostly owing to strictly imposed anti-poaching regulations and the reintroduction of key stone species such as the brown bear. It is believed Ceaușescu being a less than capable hunter is the reason for the comparatively high number of bears in the Carpathian Mountains. Unable to shoot many bears, his trusted aides launched a re-population programme so that he had a better chance of killing one, and alleviating them from his tempers. Today, we can still see the result of high bear numbers throughout Romania's pristine forests.

Following the fall of communism in 1989

Following an overthrow and bloody execution of Ceaușescu in the Romanian Revolution of 1989, the economy plummeted as did the timber industry, which had a serendipitous effect on the country's wilderness. Yet, after just tens years respite, the exploitation of Romania's woodlands recommenced but at an even greater intensity. Forests that were nationalized under Ceaușescu were privatised, many of which have since been clear cut at an alarming rate. To compound matters, the democratization of hunting laws has led to a substantial fall in wildlife.

Time to take action

Privatization, while being mostly damaging to Romania's natural environment, is also an opportunity to invest in land. Our partners FCC have been systematically purchasing 20,000Ha of wilderness for protection and the prevention of further exploitation. These old-growth forests are particularly precious and unique to Europe.

Mossy Earth and FCC have set up an exciting new partnership to allow you to reforest these clear cut areas.

Camera Traps Winter 2017 - 2018

Meet some of the locals!

Red Deer - Cervus elaphus
Brown Bear - Ursus arctos
Alpine Longicorn - Rosalia alpina
Chamois - Rupicapra rupicapra
Wolf - Canis lupus
Lynx - Lynx lynx