Following BASC’s intervention this week the Welsh Assembly Government (WAG) has renewed a key general licence which makes it legal to shoot woodpigeons and other birds to protect crops. The ability to legally control woodpigeons is of paramount importance for farmers and BASC welcomes the fact that WAG have now corrected the situation.

BASC’s Conor O’Gorman said: “The general licence is a critical legal instrument which allows the shooting of birds for specific purposes such as crop protection.  They are normally renewed annually. This appears to have been a serious oversight by the Assembly Government which BASC has been able to correct. It’s a vital move for farmers and woodpigeon shooters.”

The general licence that has now been renewed is for the purpose of preventing the spread of disease and for preventing serious damage to livestock, foodstuffs for livestock, crops, vegetables, fruit, growing timber, fisheries or inland waters.  The species to which the general licence applies are woodpigeon, crow, collared dove, great black-backed gull, lesser black-backed gull, herring gull, jackdaw, jay, magpie, feral pigeon, rook, house sparrow and starling.

All Welsh general licences will expire on 30 June 2010 this year pending a WAG announcement on what changes may take effect from 1 July 2010 onwards.

To find out more about general licences visit our advisory webpage at 





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