In September 2016 the Norwegian government approved a 75% cull of the population of Norway's wolves due to them being a danger to livestock. There were an estimated 68 wolves left in the wilderness areas and therefore 47 were on the 'hit list' to be shot, the largest number in any year since 1911. This, according to environmental groups, would have been disastrous for the species. However it was proved that not all of them were attacking and killing sheep and in December 2016 32 of them were reprieved. By all accounts, culling of endangered predators can only be carried out if there is documented evidence to prove that they are a risk to livestock. In this case, there were just a handful of lone young wolves spread over a wide area that appeared to be doing all the damage.
The pardon came as a surprise to both conservation and hunting lobbyists. More than 300 hunters who were preparing for the hunt, due to start in January 2017, ended up having to put away their guns!
120,000 and counting
RED SQUIRRELS IN SCOTLAND
According to the Scottish Wildlife Trust, fewer than 120,000 red squirrels remain in Scotland, 75% of the total UK population. Without urgent action they could disappear from our shores within a generation.
Of the 220 odd species of owl
living in the world,
only 5 live in Britain.