France suspends controversial songbird glue trapping – environment


France suspended glue trapping of songbirds this year, but stopped before abolishing the controversial practice which is criticized as barbaric by bird enthusiasts and banned by European Union regulations.President Emmanuel Macron said in a statement Thursday that following a meeting with Environment Minister Barbara Pompili and President of the Hunting Federation Willy Schraen, the thrush and blackbird hunting quota with glue traps will be zeroed this year.

France is the only country to still allow the capture of birds with glue traps – and other “traditional” methods such as snares and nets – despite a ban by the European Union in 1979.

Under a 1989 decree authorizing glue trapping as long as it is “selective, controlled and in limited quantities”, France has authorized the practice every year despite protests from bird protection organizations, which claim that glue traps cause severe stress and so do protected species. caught in them.

“It’s a good result, because until now, every year an exception has been made to allow hunting. But they are not banning the practice, they are only suspending it, ”President of the French Bird Protection Association Yves Verilhac told Reuters.

The association says glue trapping is a “cruel and odious” practice of a bygone era and that France should join other EU countries in banning it altogether.

Also read: Tropical songbirds stop breeding to survive drought

Verilhac said Macron was only responding to an injunction from the European Union on July 4 and the threat of EU legal action against France.

The statement from the Elysee Palace said France was awaiting a response from the European Court of Justice on legal issues related to glue trapping.

The head of the hunting federation, Schraen, told BFM television that there was no reason to ban glue trapping and that his association would challenge the decision in court.

“There are only a few thousand hunters in the south of France and they have been doing so for decades. It has no impact on the number of birds, ”he said.

He said no protected species were caught in this way and the suspension was a purely political decision.

“I defend these rural values, which must endure,” he said.

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