Wolf tear in the Ennstal? Styria is now planning a new regulation

Wolf tear in the Ennstal?  Styria is now planning a new regulation
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Image: (APA/dpa/Lino Mirgeler)

Most recently, the existing regulation and the wolf management plan introduced in 2021 were considered to be sufficient. Now, however, a panel of experts is to present a regulation based on the Carinthian model, as the state of Styria informed on Wednesday.

“The current numbers of cracks in Styria are low – but I take the concerns and fears of the affected interest groups seriously. Because if a wolf attacks sheep, it causes a lot of suffering for animals and humans,” said Ursula Lackner (SPÖ), Minister for the Environment, explaining the step . The announced new regulation is intended to specify the removal of conspicuous animals. “In this way, we ensure that we can react appropriately if the number of cracks should increase,” says Lackner.

Purchase promotion for protective fences

In addition, immediate measures should already apply in the beginning of the alpine season: “So that grazing animals can be better protected, a purchase subsidy for protective fences will be set up,” the broadcast said. Funding comes from the agricultural department of Provincial Councilor Hans Seitinger (ÖVP). The funding will be based on the Lower Austrian model.

Three sheep killed

“At the same time, the most recent pictures from the Ennstal also show that even fenced-in pastures right next to the farm are not safe from problem wolves,” said Seitinger. In the municipality of Mitterberg-Sankt Martin in the district of Liezen were on the B320 on Tuesday found three dead sheep. A wolf tear was suspected. According to Seitlinger, he welcomes the planned legal changes to the removal of problematic animals. The wolf is strictly protected under the European Fauna-Flora-Habitat Directive (FFH Directive) as well as other international conventions and national laws.

“A European Problem”

In the opinion of the Agricultural Provincial Council, this strict protection must be lifted by the EU, “because there are now 20,000 wolves living in Europe. The wolves are no longer threatened, the good conservation status required by the Habitats Directive has long been exceeded and the increasing wolf population is not Styrian, not an Austrian problem, but now a major European problem. The wolves have no natural enemies and their number as well as the number of cracks has exploded. Nobody wants to eradicate the wolf, but without wolf management and sustainable removal, this issue will develop into a permanent catastrophe. We can don’t throw our alpine farming and tourism as well as the high animal welfare standards to the wolves,” criticized Seitinger. On many alpine pastures, comprehensive wolf-proof herd protection is impossible to implement.

As reported, Upper Austria also wants to change its wolf ordinance in order to be able to shoot risky or problem animals. In the last week of April, the draft of the new ordinance was examined. The aim is for the new regulation to come into force by the middle of the year.

Source: Nachrichten

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