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Title of the project

Monitoring and control of rabies in Red fox (Vulpes vulpes) population in Greece


Since the appearance of rabies in red fox populations near the Greek – Skopje borders the October of 2011, the first incident on a red fox in northern Greece took place at 19th of October 2012 , a total of 26 new incidents were verified in Greece and rabies has been expanding towards the south of the country having reached already central Greece in less than 9 months.
Due to the public health hazard, an epizootic surveillance and prevention program has been approved by the Ministry of Rural Development and Food in order to control the spread of the disease in the country. Hellenic Hunters Confederation (HHC) has been since the beginning one of the main collaborators in the process of the epizootic surveillance program. The basic aim of the program is to conduct systematic collection of samples (heads from dead wild and domestic animals possibly infected with rabbies) and specifically from red fox because the species constitutes the dominant reservoir of the virus in wildlife.

Hellenic Hunters Confederation has actively enganged in the program in the following ways:
– Participation with representatives in all the committees about rabies, either scientific or coordinative were in many cases other participants praised the organization, the speed and effectiveness of hunting organizations.
– Informing members of hunting organizations
– Announcements and informative articles
– Since the beginning of the program educational and informative seminars are organized


First results have proved a total of 37 positive Red fox samples for rabbies in Greece so far, and a continuous spreading of the disease from north to the south. The study continues and more updates will be available soon. Decisions of probable control of red fox population are expected from the Ministry of Environment, Energy & Climate Change in which Hellenic Hunters Confederation along with the 7 Hunting Federations and the Gameguard Body will play a main role.


Country Greece
Level National

Starting date


Habitat Types

Farmland, Forest/Woodland, Scrub/Grassland, Wetland, Coastal, Island, Mountains, Suburban

Protection status of the areas

Natura 2000, Emerald Network, Ramsar, Regional protected area, National protected area, Areas with voluntary or mandatory hunting ban, Hunting reserve, No protection status


Species Caracteristics Huntable species, Abundant species
Species Type Mammals (other than large carnivors), Generalist predators
Name(s) of main species Red fox - Vulpes vulpes

Conservation action(s)

Management of habitats and wildlife (e.g. conservation and restoration activities), Research and data collection (e.g. monitoring, bag data), Communication and education (for different target audiences e.g. hunters, the wider public), Policy work (e.g. positioning of hunting organisations, demonstrating conservation actions), Enforcement (e.g. of hunting legislation, codes of conduct)


Leading partners 1. The official Veterinary Authorities and specifically the Department of Animal disease, Division Animal Health, General Directorate of Veterinary Ministry of Rural Development and Food (MRDF).2. The Directorate of Aesthetic Forests - Parks and Hunting of the Ministry of Environment, Energy and Climate3. Hellenic Hunters Confederation
Other partners • Hunting Federation of Crete & Dodecanese (www.akokd.gr), • Hunting Federation of Archipelago (www.bkoa.gr), • Hunting Federation of Peloponnese (www.gkop.gr),• Hunting Federation of Sterea Hellas (www.dkose.gr), • Hunting Federation Epirus (www.ekoepirus.gr), • Hunting Federation of Macedonia and Thrace (www.hunters.gr)• Hunting Federation of Thessaly (www.komthes.gr)• The National Reference Laboratory for Rabies Animal Centre of Athens Veterinary Institutions (https://sites.anses.fr/en/minisite/rabies/greek-national-reference-laboratory-rabies-virology-laboratory-athens)• The Veterinary Directorate of the Region Regional Sections (former county)• The Departments of Veterinary Regional Unit (former county) of the program.

Estimation of the budget (total or annual)

75000 Euros annually

Estimation of Human Resources needed

The total of 350 Gamekeepers of Hunting Organizations in Greece are actively participating in the collection of samples from Red fox from all over Greece, as well as informing local people on actions and precautions that need to be taken


1) Ministerial Decision 1604/45066/11-04-2012 (G.G.P. 1273 issue B’)2) Update of Ministerial Decision 331/10301/25-01-2013 (G.G.P 198 issue B’)