Welcome to the webpage of the TransLoc Database

The TransLoc database contains information about hundreds of populations of species that have been voluntarily translocated in the Western Palearctic, aiming at obtaining wild, viable populations.


Map of the 1432 translocated populations recorded so far. For every population, the location point shows the center of the locality where the translocated population was or is currently occurring, i.e., a municipality (most often) or a natural park, a reserve, an island, a cape, a peak, a lake… The accurate locations of the populations are not available on this map.

Precisions about population delimitation

We use a definition of the population from population biology theory, i.e., a group of organisms of the same species that live in a particular geographic area at the same time, with the capability of interbreeding. Concretely, given what we know about the species biology, the landscape structure and the geographical distance between separated groups of individuals, if we believe that gene flow due to the dispersal of individuals or diaspores (e.g. seeds, fruits) or gametes (e.g. through pollen) between these groups probably occurs only on few occasions per generation, then we consider these groups of individuals as distinct populations.

It might be difficult in some cases to decide whether different groups should be bundled together in a single population. A priori, if the authors of a document related to a translocation use the word population, we will consider this entity as one population in the database. If the word population is not used, or if it appears clearly that it has a meaning different from the one defined above, we will delimitate populations according to our definition.

Precisions about which translocated populations can be included in the database and which populations cannot, according to translocation type

We include in the database populations that have been reinforced with individuals from abroad (reinforcement) or created in a site where the species had gone extinct before (reintroduction) or in a site where it has never occurred to our knowledge (introduction), with the objective of improving the viability (see Box) of the reinforced population or resulting in the viability of the created population.

The necessary objective of viability can be one objective among others. For example, we include in the database populations that have been translocated with the double objective of obtaining both a viable population and data to improve further translocations (e.g. Colas et al. 2008, Noël et al. 2011), or with the double objective of obtaining a viable population as well as a so-called ecosystem service (Millenium Ecosystem Assessment 2005). We also include in the database translocated populations which viability is a particular goal included in a broader objective of, e.g., restoring a given community (e.g. Donath et al. 2007).

On the contrary, we do not include populations that were translocated for experimental purpose only, such as reciprocal transplant experiments to test for local adaptation with no aim of improving population viability (e.g., Raabová et al. 2007), or survival experiments in artificial ecosystems like aquaculture tanks (e.g. Balestri et al. 2011). We neither include the translocation of game species with no population viability consideration like, e.g., the massive release of captive born birds for recreative shooting. We neither include in the database translocation cases where individuals were just displaced from their original site to close vicinity, allowing these individuals to be saved from, e.g., civil engineering, but where no reinforcement and no new population could be considered (e.g. Bruelheide and Flintrop 2000).

Box on population viability

Viability is a concept from population dynamics theory. Given the probabilistic nature of individual survival, growth, reproduction and dispersal, the persistence or extinction of a population in the future must be foreseen with probabilistic analysis. Sophisticated population viability analysis using demographic rates from individual monitoring and matrix models can be conducted to estimate extinction probabilities over a given time period (Beissinger and McCullough 2002). A population is then considered viable if its probability of extinction over a time period in the future is below a given threshold (e.g. less than 5% over 100 years). Practically, relevant demographic data sets allowing such sophisticated population viability analysis are scarce, and viability is often estimated using other indicators, such as those used by IUCN to classify species in Red List categories (A to D criteria in IUCN 2001). See Robert et al. (2015) for the use of red list criteria in the context of translocations.


Balestri, E., Vallerini, F., & Lardicci, C. (2011). Storm-generated fragments of the seagrass Posidonia oceanica from beach wrack – A potential source of transplants for restoration.Biological Conservation, 144(5), 1644–1654. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.biocon.2011.02.020

Beissinger, S. R., & McCullough, D. L. (Eds.). (2002). Population Viability Analysis. Chicago, USA: University of Chicago Press.

Bruelheide, H., & Flintrop, T. (2000). Evaluating the transplantation of a meadow in the Harz Mountains, Germany. Biological Conservation, 92(1), 109 120. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0006-3207(99)00061-0

Colas, B., Kirchner, F., Riba, M., Olivieri, I., Mignot, A., Imbert, E., … Fréville, H. (2008). Restoration demography: a 10-year demographic comparison between introduced and natural populations of endemic Centaurea corymbosa (Asteraceae). Journal of Applied Ecology, 45(5), 1468–1476.

Donath, T. W., Bissels, S., Hölzel, N., & Otte, A. (2007). Large scale application of diaspore transfer with plant material in restoration practice – Impact of seed and microsite limitation. Biological Conservation, 138(1–2), 224–234. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.biocon.2007.04.020

Millennium Ecosystem Assessment (Ed.). (2005). Ecosystems and human well-being: synthesis. Washington, DC: Island Press.

Noël, F., Prati, D., van Kleunen, M., Gygax, A., Moser, D., & Fischer, M. (2011). Establishment success of 25 rare wetland species introduced into restored habitats is best predicted by ecological distance to source habitats. Biological Conservation, 144(1), 602–609.

Raabová, J., Münzbergová, Z., & Fischer, M. (2007). Ecological rather than geographic or genetic distance affects local adaptation of the rare perennial herb, Aster amellus. Biological Conservation, 139(3–4), 348–357. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.biocon.2007.07.007

Robert, A., Colas, B., Guigon, I., Kerbiriou, C., Mihoub, J. B., Saint‐Jalme, M., & Sarrazin, F. (2015). Defining reintroduction success using IUCN criteria for threatened species: a demographic assessment. Animal Conservation, 18(5), 397-406.

UICN. (2001). Catégories et critères de l’UICN pour la liste rouge : Version 3.1. Gland, Switzerland: Commission de sauvegarde des espèces de l’UICN.


Precisions about geographical limits

We consider translocations in the Western Palearctic, i.e., in European territories up to Ural and Caucasus, and countries bordering the Mediterranean.


Precisions about the taxonomic kingdoms involved the database

We consider all taxa from Animalia, Fungi, and Plantae kingdoms.


Precisions about the information included, when available, in the database for every translocated population

For every translocated population, the TransLoc database gathers and standardizes data in 84 fields of information grouped in the following categories:
  • Context
  • Type/Phase
  • Location
  • Habitat type
  • Biological material
  • Interventions
  • Post-RST* monitoring (* Release, Sowing, or Transplantation)
  • Results
  • Bibliography
Each category corresponds to one tab in the population pages of the website. The definitions of every field of information and of every possible response can be downloaded here.

Two additional tabs are available for every translocated population. The first tab records the number of translocated individuals per stage/age, year, and accurate location of RST. The second tab records the population size (including native individuals and/or translocated individuals and/or their descent) per stage/age and per year.


Precisions about our sources of information

Our sources of information are:
  • articles from scientific journals,
  • books,
  • grey literature: e.g. activity reports from organizations managing natural areas,
  • websites: e.g., the CARE MEDIFLORA website (http://www.care-mediflora.eu/),
  • administrative forms, e.g. derogation requests to laws on nature protection,
  • interviews of stakeholders from various public organizations, associations, or private companies implied in translocations,
  • spontaneous contributions from any people interested in the project.


Precisions about who we are and our funding sources

Bruno Colas1 and François Sarrazin2 are the project promoters and coordinators.

François Sarrazin first raised the idea of developing a translocation database and translocation guidelines combining plants and animals in the early 2010’s.

Bruno Colas devised the structure of the database (information fields and lists of possible responses) and wrote the texts and definitions with insightful contributions from Paul Acker1, Aris Deimezis1, Iris Le Roncé1,3, Bertrand Schatz3, Chloé Malaisé1, Sarra Ferjani1,4, Anaël Mayeur1, Mohamed Diallo1, Anne-Charlotte Vaissière1, Charles Thévenin2, Alexandre Robert2, François Sarrazin.

Sarra Ferjani, Linda Angulo Lopez4 and Isabelle Baly4 took care of all computational issues, including the computing architecture of the database, the interrelationship with external taxonomic and geographical databases, the design and implementation of the web site, query procedures, etc.

1 Ecologie, Systématique et Evolution (ESE), Université Paris-Sud/CNRS/AgroParisTech, Université Paris Saclay, 91400, Orsay, France
2 Centre d’Ecologie et des Sciences de la Conservation (CESCO), MNHN/CNRS/Sorbonne Université, 43 et 61 rue Buffon, 75005 Paris, France
3 Centre d’Ecologie Fonctionnelle et Evolutive (CEFE-CNRS), 1919 route de Mende, 34293 Montpellier, France
4 Bases de données Biodiversité, Ecologie, Environnements Sociétés (BBEES), CNRS-MNHN, 57 rue Cuvier, 75005 Paris, France

In addition to logistic support from our affiliated institutions (see above), the project benefited from the following funding programs:
  • 2010: IngECOTech, CNRS-CEMAGREF (to FS)
  • 2015-2018: DIM-R2DS, Région Ile-de-France (to FS)
  • 2015-2018: Ministère de la Transition Ecologique et Solidaire; Fondation pour la Recherche sur la Biodiversité (to FS)
  • 2017-2019: Initiative de Recherche Stratégique ACE-ICSEN, Université Paris Saclay (to BC)
  • 2018-2019: BASC-Partenariat, LabEx BASC (to BC)
  • 2019: PEPS-ECOMOB, CNRS-INEE (to BC)

In addition to people cited above, the project benefited from significant help at various stages from (in alphabetical order):
  • Bertille Asset, Aymeric Watterlot and Julien Buchet, from the Conservatoire Botanique National de Bailleul, Bailleul.
  • Philippe Bardin and Clémence Salvaudon, from the Conservatoire Botanique National du Bassin Parisien, Paris.
  • Corina Buisson, from the Conservatoire Botanique d’Alsace, Erstein.
  • Cécile Callou, from the BBEES lab (Bases de données Biodiversité, Ecologie, Environnements Sociétés), Paris.
  • Jocelyne Cambecèdes, Jérôme Garcia and Gérard Largier, from the Conservatoire Botanique National des Pyrénées et de Midi-Pyrénées, Bagnères-de-Bigorre.
  • Martine Couturier and Annie Aboucaya , from the Parc National de Port-Cros, Hyères.
  • Lara Dixon, James Molina and Guillaume Papuga, from the Conservatoire Botanique National méditerranéen de Porquerolles, Porquerolles and Montpellier.
  • Juan Fernández-Manjarrés, from the ESE lab (Ecologie, Systématique, Evolution), team TESS (Trajectoires Ecologiques et Socio-écosystèmes), Orsay.
  • Noémie Fort, Véronique Bonnet and Stéphanie Huc, from the Conservatoire Botanique National Alpin, Gap and Champbéry.
  • Perrine Gauthier and John Thompson, from the CEFE (Centre d’Ecologie Fonctionnelle et Evolutive), Montpellier.
  • Sandrine Godefroid, from the Meise Botanic Garden, Brussels.
  • José María Iriondo Alegría and Alfredo García Fernández, from Universidad Rey Juan Carlos, Madrid.
  • Jérôme Millet and Johan Gourvil, from the Agence Française pour la Biodiversité, Paris.
  • Aïssa Morin, from the CESCO (Centre d’Ecologie et des Sciences de la Conservation), Paris.
  • Serge Muller, from the Conseil National de la Protection de la Nature, Paris.
  • Dominique Orth and Rémy Stocky, DREAL Grand-Est, Strasbourg.
  • Michel Perret, from the Ministère de l’Ecologie et du Développement Durable.
  • Carole Piazza, from the Conservatoire Botanique National de Corse.


Precisions about how to contact us, participate, and get access to data and documents.

Visitors have access to taxonomical data, locations to the municipal level and year of first release/sowing/transplantation. Much more data are available to participants, including, e.g., the numbers of translocated individuals and population sizes.

To participate, you can simply ask us here, as well as to contact us for any information, to obtain a database extraction on particular taxa, or to inform us about a given translocated population.