The Swiss Government, department of environment, opened the Swiss management plan for wolf and lynx in June 2014 for consultation. The pressure is even there to cancel the Bern Convention to ease the killing of wolves.

The intention is to permit humans to more easily regulation the large carnivore populations. Under the proposed version, shooting of individual wolves would then be allowed, if

the wolf population is considered to be stable due to reproduction on a regularly basis, *(currently there is only one known pack in whole Switzerland!)

  • a monitoring system is established and
  • livestock protection means are applied

The final authority for permission of shooting a wolf will still reside with the individual regional jurisdiction (‚Kanton’)

The government of Graubuenden, however, demands further modifications to allow a more practical shooting of wolves within a pack – especially wolf pups and therefore follows the direction Latvia with their controversial wolf killing practice has taken.

Graubuenden as well as other regions demand to have the final authority to more easier kill wolves in case they become a too severe competition to hunters in the area on the hunters claims that they have subjectively less game to shoot.

At the same time, the benefits of the wolf presence, such as lowering the number of ungulates in the forests, should no longer be considered. This contradicts the fact that already today hunters are not able to regulate the ungulate population effectively. Also hunters take between 3-5 roe deer per 100 ha, while the wolf takes 1,6 deer.

The proposed changes to the existing Swiss National Wolf and Lynx management plan, not to mention the additional changes demanded by the government of Graubuenden, with its unethical focus on wolf pups, is a slap in the face of the European wolf recovery efforts.

Wolves are not literate and do not know when they are crossing from an area where they are really protected into an area where they can be hunted on the assumption that they may kill a deer or sheep. Wolves born in Switzerland are known to have already passed into Austria and wolves from Germany, Solvenia and Spain migrate to Switzerland. Wolves are a far roaming species, so the only answer to a long term success of the wolf recolonization of Europe is an international concerted wolf action plan, which is based on a clear and unified wolf management plan within all European member states accompanied by an intense public awareness campaign to increase the respect and tolerance of and for large carnivores. Additionaly the compensation plans for deadstock should also be synchronised.

The wolf is listed as an endangered species in Europe, its protection is defined in several international agreements, such as the Fauna-Flora Habitat guiding principal and the Berner convention.

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About Author

Max A. E. Rossberg is an avid WIlderness Advocates with extensive experience in Sustainable Tourism Strategies and Multistakeholder planning processes.

3 Comments

  1. Gynette Cathey on

    With only one pack in the country how can you justify the killing of any wolves? Essential to healthy ecosystems is what wolves are. Stop killing in the name of hate and myth.

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