Natural England ‘backs down’ over bird kill licences to avoid legal action

Natural England has ended the discretionary practice of killing birds under a general licence, following legal action taken by Chris Packham’s legal outfit Wild Justice.

From tomorrow it will be illegal to kill any of the 16 bird species, such as jackdaws and magpies, without applying to the regulator for an individual licence.

Campaigner and Wild Justice founder Mark Avery told ENDS the regulator had “given in” and “backed down in full” before it was taken to court where it knew it would lose, he said.

All wild birds are protected under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 in the UK.

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