Feature articles

08 May 2019

BPCA prepares to gather evidence for Defra on general licences

Defra has initiated a formal evidence gathering exercise to capture information from all concerned parties about the impact of the recent withdrawal of three general licences for bird control.

BPCA is collecting the evidence of members companies. All full members have been invited to contribute. 

Call for evidence

Defra has said that they want to gain a clear understanding of the implications for:

  • The protection of wild birds
  • The impacts on crops
  • Livestock
  • Wildlife
  • Disease
  • Human health and safety
  • Wider nature conservation efforts.

More information about the call for evidence

Defra has said the evidence gathered from that exercise, alongside the information that they and Natural England have already received since 25 April will inform decisions and approach to getting back to a satisfactory situation. 

BPCA intends to respond publicly to the request for evidence and has asked member companies to send their examples directly to the Association by Monday 13 May, 8.30 am

BPCA is not collecting evidence from non-members, however you can respond directly to Defra.

The Secretary of State then intends to take a further week to consider the evidence gathered and make a decision.

A separate review of general licences will take place later in the year and there will be a further opportunity to submit evidence and views at that point.

What does Defra want to know?

Defra has asked for us to answer these questions specifically:

1) Your views on the alternatives to killing or taking a specific bird species for:

  • Conserving flora and fauna
  • Preserving public health or safety
  • Preventing serious damage or disease (serious damage relates to serious damage to livestock, foodstuffs for livestock, crops, vegetables, fruit, growing timber fisheries or inland waters)

In particular, what are these alternatives and to which bird species do they relate? In your experience or evidence, how effective and practicable are they?

2) Your experience or evidence of any benefits that were delivered by the three revoked general licences?

3) Your experience or evidence of any problems with or caused by the three revoked general licences. Are there any conditions, in your view, that could be attached to general licences to address these issues?

4) Your experience or evidence of any problems caused by the revocation of the three revoked general licences.

Defra taking over General Licences

The Secretary of State for Environment, Food and rural Affairs has taken over the responsibilities for general licences via Defra.

A Letter from Environment Secretary Michael Gove in response to Natural England Chairman Tony Juniper

A Letter from Natural England Chairman Tony Juniper to Environment Secretary Michael Gove

Source: Online

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