The practices, which include the use of nets and cages, are controversial and have resulted in a long-term row between hunting groups and animal welfare activists.
The “re-authorization” comes after the State Council suspended several hunting licenses in early August this year.
She found that previous authorizations to hunt blackbirds, larks, thrushes, golden plovers and lapwing – using nets fixed to the ground or using nooses – did not “comply with the requirements of European law on the protection of birds ”.
She recalled that a European directive dating from 2009 “prohibits the techniques of capturing birds en masse and without distinction of species”.
This text allows exceptions, however, on condition that they are “duly justified and when there is no other satisfactory solution for capturing certain birds”.
Public consultations and new decrees
However, in response to the Council’s decision, the state launched four public consultations on “traditional hunting” of birds.
Read more: France revises cancellation of ban on cages and net traps for certain birds
The consultations, which ended Oct. 6, aimed to gauge public opinion on laws that allowed for the nationwide capture of 106,500 larks, 5,800 thrushes and blackbirds, 1,200 lapwing and 30 golden plovers.
The consultations for the 2021-2022 hunting season focused on the issues of:
- Lapwing and golden plovers trapping with nets in the Ardennes
- Trapping skylarks with nets in Pyrénées-Atlantiques, Lot-et-Garonne, Landes and Gironde
- Capture larks using cages in the Landes and Lot-et-Garonne
- Noose trapping thrushes and blackbirds in the Ardennes.
Now that this phase is over, the conclusions of these consultations should be published in the Official Journal by tomorrow (Friday, October 15), reports Le Parisien.
He said the results will effectively see a “revival” of traditional hunting methods.
Eventually, hunting should be able to continue, due to the “absence of alternative solutions”, the “small quantity” of birds hunted and the “selectivity” of hunters on the species hunted.
A total of 113,530 wild birds could theoretically be hunted from Saturday.
Response from the association
The hunting group the National Federation of Hunters (FNC) said it was delighted with this decision and said it was very happy to be able to “hunt with these methods”.
However, the bird protection group the League for the Protection of Birds (LPO) strongly criticized the decision to launch public consultations and said it would oppose the decision.
In a press release, the LPO announced that if these decrees were published in the Official Journal, it would request “their immediate suspension before the Council of State”.
The LPO also added a reminder that the lark is classified as “Least Concern”, and the Lapwing “Near Threatened” on the Red List of Threatened Species of the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN).
Traditional bird hunting methods used in parts of France deemed illegal
France bans dove hunting after 80% drop in numbers
France revises cancellation of ban on cages and net traps for certain birds