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HUNTING

French animal rights groups demand ban on fox and deer hunting

A coalition of more than 20 French animal rights groups, including one led by former film star Brigitte Bardot, called on Friday for a ban on hunting with hounds.

French animal rights groups demand ban on fox and deer hunting
AFP

“Several European countries (including Germany, Britain and Belgium) have already outlawed this cruel sport,” they wrote in a letter to Environment Minister Nicolas Hulot.

“What is France waiting for to join these countries that had the courage to ban hunting with hounds?” it said.

Fox and deer hunting with dogs are legal in France where wild boar and hares are also traditionally hunted with hounds.

The call comes after Hulot, France's most famous ecologist, indicated last month that he wanted a rethink of the laws governing hunting.

“Certains practices like hunting with hounds prolong the agony and stress of the animal. That deeply upsets me,” Hulot said in an interview with the
French magazine, L'Obs.

“That is not what I call civilised,” he said, adding he that wanted to initiate a “big rethink” of the way animals were treated with the minister of
agriculture.

More than 20 animal rights groups backed the call for a ban including PETA, Sea Shepherd and the International Fund for Animal Welfare.

READ ALSO: Cornered deer kills French hunter after goring him with antlers

HUNTING

France bans glue trapping of birds after EU court ruling

France's top administrative court said on Monday that glue hunting of birds would be prohibited, revoking exemptions granted by French authorities for a traditional practice that has long been denounced by animal rights campaigners.

France bans glue trapping of birds after EU court ruling
A demonstration of hunters to denounce the ban on glue hunting, in south-west France in 2020. Photo: RAYMOND ROIG / AFP.

The State Council’s move comes after the EU Court of Justice said in March that using so-called glue traps caused “irreparable harm” to the thrushes and blackbirds that are caught.

The birds are then used to lure others to the waiting hunters, who say they are later cleaned of the sticky material, called birdlime, and released. But critics say the technique invariably leads to the capture of a wide variety of birds that are often injured, including having their feathers damaged or torn off.

READ ALSO Chasse à la glu: Why French hunters are taking the streets

France was the last EU member to still authorise the traps with an annual quota of 42,000 birds, mainly in southern France, though President Emmanuel Macron suspended the hunt last August pending the EU court ruling.

Two campaign groups had brought a case against the French environment ministry arguing that the practice constituted animal cruelty.

Activists say that 150,000 birds die annually in France from non-selective hunting techniques such as glue traps and nets at a time when Europe’s bird population is in free-fall.

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