crow shooting

Shooting UK will keep you updated with the latest developments with articles, which are all listed below. All include links to forms and information.

Jackdaw

‘Disastrous’ Welsh general licenses come into effect

The licenses which were described by BASC as ‘a retrograde step for conservation’ have been altered to remove magpies, jays and jackdaws from the conservation licence (GL004) and to restrict carrion crow control to a ‘season’ running from the first of February to the 31st of August. Steve Griffiths, BASC…

wood pigeon

Why the wood pigeon is so successful

About wood pigeon You may think that you are hearing pigeons heating up for the breeding season in April and May, seeing lots of wing-clapping display flights and hearing lots of their distinctive “don’t scold so, Susie” cooing. However perhaps the first thing about wood pigeon that will surprise you…

Curlews

National Resources Wales approve change to general licences

The Board of Natural Resources Wales has voted to approve a set of changes to the Welsh general licences which will prevent their use to control magpies, jackdaws and jays for conservation purposes and will impose a limited time window to control carrion crows for conservation. The proposals, which were…

Wild Justice’s victory claim incorrect

The campaign group announced earlier that it would challenge the inclusion of gamebirds as livestock for the purposes of using the general licence to protect them from predation. The group appear to have hoped that by preventing the control of corvids to protect gamebirds they could disrupt shooting activities. However…

Could the “pest birds list” return?

Currently the control of pest birds such as magpies, carrion crows and jackdaws is permitted under the general licence which allows control of these birds for certain purposes. The general licence system was introduced in 1992 by Michael Howard who was the Secretary of State for the Environment at the…

Flying pheasant

Wild Justice launches ANOTHER licence challenge

Once again Wild Justice has sprung into action, now challenging DEFRA’s updated shooting licences for England, which classify game birds as livestock, allowing keepers to shoot wild birds in order to protect pheasants and red-legged partridges. The new general licence, GL24, was issued on 1st January. Wild Justice has challenged…

changes to general licences on bird species

Significant changes to general licences

The general licences allow the control of a range of bird species which would otherwise be protected; these include species such as wood pigeons and carrion crows. They were widely seen as uncontroversial and effective and were used by farmers, shoots and conservation bodies. However their legality was challenged by…

changes to general licences on bird species

Consultation on general licences in Northern Ireland has been dropped

The Department of Agriculture Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA) abandoned the consultation process after it came under fire for bias. The consultation had looked at proposals to remove herring gulls, both species of black-backed gull and rooks from 2021/22 general licences for Northern Ireland. However, countryside groups pointed out fundamental…

Releasing gamebird

The new GL43 general licence – here’s what you need to know

Defra has published its new and long-awaited general licence (GL43), to cover the releasing of gamebirds on European protected sites. These protected sites are Special Areas of Conservation (SAC), Special Protection Areas (SPA), Ramsar wetlands and potential SPAs and SACs or proposed Ramsar wetlands. The potential or proposed sites are…

magpie

Why has Natural England introduced new controls for corvids?

Things had calmed down after Natural England helped stoke anger over the general licences two years ago, but it has heaped coal back on the fire. Back then it was Wild Justice that threw a spanner in the works, helping to strip vital protection from endangered curlew, lapwing and other…

Brown hare

Ban on brown hare shooting looms

Senior Government sources have told The Telegraph that a close season is to be introduced for brown hares. A complete ban on shooting mountain hares is also to be introduced in England. News of the forthcoming ban has sparked anger amongst fieldsports bodies, who argue that hare poaching is the…

pigeon shooting

What you need to know about the new 2021 general licences for England

The new 2021 general licences for England came into effect from 1 January and are valid for this calendar year. They were announced by Defra in November after the withdrawal and subsequent reinstatement following a challenge by Wild Justice. New 2021 general licences in detail GL40 Conservation of endangered wild…

lesser black backed gull

Natural England adds ‘screening’ to general licence applications

Natural England’s latest move will mean it takes longer to get permission to control birds not covered by the general licences, such as lesser black-backed gulls and herring gulls. The government body advises: “To apply for a licence to control wild birds for conservation or health and safety purposes that…

Carrion crow, Corvus corone

High Court rules Welsh general licences lawful

Essential pest control in Wales will be allowed to continue after Judge Jarman QC rejected the claims of Wild Justice on 18 January 2021. Wild Justice had asserted that general licences GL001, GL002 and GL004 were not lawful but in the High Court judgement all three of these claims were…

Ring-necked parakeet

Surrey Police state killing any wild bird is “an offence”

It has come to our attention that wild birds are being attacked and killed using catapults.Under Section 1 of the… Posted by Surrey Police on Saturday, September 26, 2020 Shooters in the Surrey area were shocked to see their county police force announce that shooting parakeets, crows and pigeons was illegal. …

crow shooting

General licence extension by DEFRA

General licence holders needing to control wild birds will be relieved to learn that DEFRA has reissued the current permits from 1 August to 31 December 2020. The department has confirmed that no action is required by the licence users beyond the ‘ongoing requirement to act in accordance with the licence…

Canada geese

Defra reissues temporary general licences ahead of deadline

Defra has reissued six general licences on a temporary basis for the control of wild birds. The temporary general licences in question  (GL26, GL28, GL31, GL34, GL35 and GL36) will be reissued from 1 March to 31 July 2020.  Licence users do not need to take further action, other than…

Crows with sheep

Is trouble with general licences brewing again?

New general licences expire soon Are general licences going to become unworkable again? Last year the three main general licences for the shooting and trapping of pest birds (GL34, GL35 and GL36) were temporarily revoked after a legal challenge. After delay and discussion they were reissued by Defra with validity…

changes to general licences on bird species

Our guide to the bird species on general licences in England

The changes to general licences in the last year resulted in a lot of confusion. To make matters simpler, we thought we would provide a visual reference to bird species on general licences in England that can be culled. Remember that the law is different in Wales. Mike Swan, Head of…