Welsh conservation efforts set back by NRW red tape

A magpie

BASC has described a decision by Natural Resources Wales to restrict the ability of conservationists and wildlife managers to control magpies, jays and jackdaws as a retrograde blow for conservation.

From July 1, those who wish to control magpies, jays and jackdaws to protect species of conservation concern must now apply for a specific licence rather than rely on General Licence GL004. The Natural Resources Wales (NRW) Board voted through the proposals with six votes in favour and three against.

Steve Griffiths, BASC Wales director, said: “It is an ill-judged approach. NRW is introducing needless red tape that makes it more difficult to control these known predatory species. It is a deeply damaging move for conservation in Wales. 

“The bureaucracy required to apply for these individual licences can take months to navigate. That means there will be damage inflicted on species that are of conservation concern in Wales, such as curlew. 

“NRW has failed to provide evidence for this unnecessary policy change. It is a retrograde blow for conservation in Wales.”

“There are hundreds of dedicated and hardworking conservationists and wildlife managers across Wales who will righty be in disbelief at this decision.”

BASC has requested the evidence base to which the policy decision has been made and will continue to campaign against this change.