In Slovenia, management with game population can be recognised as systematic, well-settled, transparent and well-controlled activity, which is based on sustainable exploitation of game species as a renewable natural resource and is orientated towards reconciliation of population densities with carrying capacities of their habitats. However, in practice there is a need for optimising the population management in both planning and hunting phase. Indeed, for an effective management a much better knowledge on and consideration of biological characteristics of game species, their intra-specific as well as inter-specific interactions is needed; moreover, information and knowledge obtained by recent studies have to be promptly disseminated to end-users, particularly population managers and hunters.
With the aim of preparing scientific backgrounds for improving population management in Slovenia, we have executed many studies on free-living ungulates during the last decade. Several conflict situations between a man and wildlife (e.g. deer-vehicle collisions; damages in agricultural ecosystems, caused by wild boar; influence of environmental factors on ecological characteristics, vitality and health status of populations) and countermeasures have been particularly emphasised. Among others, we perform some Slovene spadework, such as:
(a) studies on ethological patterns of animals/species by using infrared cameras;
(b) determination of presence, distribution and prevalence of different anomalies in ungulate mandibles/teeth;
(c) radiotelemetry of wild boar (in collaboration with colleagues from Biotehnical Faculty, Ljubljana).
With performing these studies we would like to achieve the following goals:
(i) to optimise population management, based on sustainable principles;
(ii) to improve management with renewable resources in both forests and agricultural ecosystems;
(iii) to minimize damages, caused by game either in agricultural ecosystems or on roads.
Importantly, together with performing studies we put much effort into prompt dissemination of recent scientific achievements in practice, either by intensive publishing of results in (inter)national journals or particularly by organising different congresses/meetings on management with game species, such as “Roe Deer Meeting” or “Wild Boar Meeting”.