D66, Groenlinks (Green Left) and Partij van de Arbeid (Labour Party) have put a motion to ban all game shooting.

Exemptions will be granted for the control of certain species that cause damage, are a danger, or for control of numbers.

There are around 30,000 shooters in the Netherlands, and the country’s shooting and firearms licensing is already some of the most strictly controlled in the world.

Only five species are on the quarry list: pheasant, mallard, brown hares, rabbits and pigeon.

A spokesperson for the KNJV (The Royal Dutch Hunting Association) told Shooting Times: “For quite some time, the Dutch anti-hunting lobby has aimed its arrows at what it calls ‘plezierjacht’, which literally translates to ‘pleasure hunting’.”

In fact, it means game shooting within the open season, which is from mid-October to the end of December. The quarry list is already very restricted, and other species, such as deer, wild boar, geese and so on, can only be shot if the authorities issue an exemption.”

“These exemptions are mostly based on the damage these species do. The parties lobbying for this change in law claim that there’s no support within our society for game shooting, and that shooting should only be allowed on the basis of approval by rural governments, and on the basis of damage or prevention of damage to farmland, or safety for (air) traffic.”

“We are being portrayed as cowboys, and the government refuses to see that we have been hunting these species for generations, and have always done this with the object of conservation rather than extermination. It is not unlikely that a majority of the parliament may vote in favour of abolishing our shooting.”

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Netherlands Dutch coalition government seeks to ban all shooting