Despite the increasing spread of wolves in Germany and Europe, the European Commission does not want to change the special status of protection of the predator. Wolves are still considered an endangered species in the rest of the European Union. A targeted hunting of the animals for depletion of inventory is therefore prohibited. The EU Commission has committed to providing special protection for wolves in Europe. For the protection of sheep and cattle, however, there should be more changes to this law in the future. EU Commission is committed to the protection of wolves. This is what Phil Hogan, the EU commissioner on Agriculture has said.
Petitions to soften laws on hunting wolves
Federal Minister of Agriculture Christian Schmidt had sent a letter to the EU Commission asking for a change to the strict protection status. This would make the animal easier to hunt. Another department of Agriculture in one of EU’s member countries had recently spoken out in favour of this.
Shooting possible in individual cases
The EU Commission was aware that the spread of wolves had problems, said Hogan. He pointed out, however, that the better protection of grazing animals would be financially supported. In addition, the current legislation already allows targeted individual killings of wolves, if it serves the “population management” and the preservation of the species is not endangered. Thus, in April 2016, the so-called problem wolf “Kurti” was shot in Lower Saxony, Germany, on instructions of the state government, after he had repeatedly come too close to people. In certain cases, shooting of wolves is allowed.
No change in hunting law
A cap on a number of wolves, from which there is a right to reduce stocks in a region, will still not exist, the EU commission has emphasized. In addition, the number of wolves in certain regions of the EU is not too high; the species continues to be considered as endangered. The inclusion of the wolf in the hunting right was rejected by a council meeting in Hanover. For years, there has been a dispute over how to handle the growing wolf population in Lower Saxony: There are some in the state wants to release the wolf in certain regions for hunting, and there are those who also demand that the wolf is included in hunting law. Most in favour of not adding wolves to the hunting law is currently in the majority.
Grazing animals in danger
Owners of grazing livestock have long been demanding an upper limit for wolves, and a softening of the laws when it comes to hunting them. Since 2008, when the first wolves settled near Lüneburg, 669 farm animals were killed. Eleven packs have settled in Lower Saxony, according to recent surveys. This big increase in the wolf population in the Saxony region has caused a lot of concern for farmers and livestock owners in the area. Many are concerned that with rising wolf populations it will only cause further damage to their farms and livestock. There are also some that are worried that the increasing number of wolves could also pose a serious danger to humans too.