Culling of wolves

The Norwegian Ministry of Climate and Environment has allowed for the culling of two wolf packs this winter. In addition, a new decision has been made regrding the licensed culling of wolves outside the designated wolf zone.

-I have today decided to allow the culling of two wolf packs that primarily live outside the designated wolf zone. In addition a new decision has been made regarding the licensed culling of wolves outside the wolf zone in the counties of Hedmark and Akershus. This decision adresses the issue of information that was found lacking by the Oslo District Court in their judgement last month, says Minister for Climate and Environment, Vidar Helgesen.

Licensed culling of two wolf packs

The licensed culling of the two wolf packs in Julussa and Osdalen, will be allowed from the 1st of January 2018. Both packs have their territories primarily outside the wolf zone in the county of Hedmark. This is in accordance with the principle of geographically differentiated management in the zones primarily designated for grazing livestock and the zone where the wolf has priority. A total of 16 wolves can be culled in these packs. This means that the licensed culling can include up to 42 wolves in total in Norway this winter. 

-I have placed great emphasis on the guidance that Parliament provided earlier this year regarding the principle of geographically differentiated management of grazing animals and wolves. It is in the overriding public interest that wolves should primarly not live outside the wolf zone, says Helgesen. 

The Regional Carnivore Management Committee allowed for the culling of an additional pack in Slettås in their orignial decision. This pack is a cross-border pack with Sweden and the Norwegian part of its territory is wholly within the wolf zone. The Ministry has therefore ammended this part of the Committee's decision and will not allow the culling of the Slettås pack.

- The aspects that have been considered regarding the Slettås pack do not provide sufficient legal basis to allow for culling. The Parliament has made it clear that the threshold for felling of wolves within the wolf zone is very high. 

The Ministry has also been provided with updated advice from the Norwegian Environment Agency which includes an evaluation of whether Norway will achieve its wolf population goals in 2018 and an appraisal of whether the culling will threaten the survival of the wolf population. 

New decision outside the wolf zone 

Last month, the Oslo District Court stopped the licensed culling of 12 wolves outside the wolf zone in regions 4 and 5. The Ministry of Climate and Environment has now made a new

decision to allow for the same quota of 12 wolves but has this time addressed the issue of lacking information that the court raised regarding the first decsion.