WWT has written to the French Government urging them to reconsider plans to allow the hunting of curlews, which are declining rapidly across the UK and Europe.
Under new proposals, the French Government are considering not renewing a moratorium which suspends the hunting of the endangered wader – due to expire on July 31. Instead they are recommending a harvest of 6,000 Eurasian Curlews for the hunting season 2019/2020.
In the letter, addressed to Environment Minister (Minister of the Ecological and Solidary Transition) Élisabeth Borne, WWT’s Director of Conservation James Robinson stresses that there is no scientific evidence to suggest the curlew can be hunted sustainably. WWT recognises other factors may be primary causes for the species’ decline, but urges hunters to adapt to the situation their quarry faces.
Curlews are now classed as a Priority Species in the UK and were added to the Red List in 2015.
Since early 2017, the trust has been involved in scoping and national scale co-ordination of curlew conservation. This year, over 50 headstarted curlew chicks were released into Gloucestershire as part of a five-year plan to recover curlew populations in lowland England and Wales.