“Enough is enough. We have tried everything else. The culling is against the law and must be stopped before it is too late to save a critically endangered species”, said Ingrid Lomelde, Policy Director at WWF-Norway.
The Norwegian management of wolves goes against the constitution, the Biodiversity Act and the Bern Convention and now the courts must decide whether it has to be changed, stated WWF-Norway. The organization has provided a subpoena of the state to the Oslo District Court.
– “The current situation is a catastrophe for the critically endangered wolf – and an embarrassment to Norway as a self-proclaimed environmental champion”, said Lomelde.
No time to wait
In addition to demanding that the Norwegian wolf management must take into consideration national laws and international obligations, WWF-Norway also demands a temporary injunction of this season´s culling in order to stop it immediately.
– “We cannot sit and watch the authorities allow an unlawful culling of one of our most endangered carnivores. That is why we have sent a subpoena to the Oslo District court. To sue the state is a serious step, which could also entail a substantial economic risk to us, but the culling has started and we cannot wait for more wolves to be killed”, said Lomelde.
Five wolves shot
Norwegian carnivore authorities have decided that a total of 50 wolves can be culled this winter. This equals about 90 percent of the wolves that permanently reside in Norway. These 50 wolves live both inside and outside of the politically established wolf zone. Initially it is the wolves outside the zone that can be culled. This culling started October 1 – so far six wolves have been shot. Whether wolves living inside the zone can be culled is an issue to be decided by the Department of Climate and Environment before the end of this year.
– “We cannot wait for the department to decide. The ongoing hunt must be stopped immediately and the whole of the wolf management must be tried before the courts. Every year the same thing happens: the management authorities decide on an extensive culling while WWF and others file complaints. Together with organizations such as Friends of the Earth Norway, NOAH, Foreningen Våre Rovdyr and Sabima we fight the same battle every year. We cannot continue this way, we need a sustainable carnivore management that ensures the long-term survival of the wolf population”, said Lomelde.