Wild birds can be killed before a licence is confirmed, says Natural England

Certain species of birds which are seriously damaging crops and livestock can be killed before an updated general licence is granted if urgent action is needed, wildlife regulator Natural England has stated.

In a position statement published yesterday, Natural England explained that, of the 50,000 people in England affected by changes to its general licence scheme, not all will need to wait for an updated licence is granted before certain birds can be killed, but the regulator will need to be notified.

Natural England said that those requiring lethal control to be carried out before the determination of their licence application “may not commit an offence”, provided they meet certain criteria, including that the action is necessary for the purpose of preserving public health, preventing the spread of disease, or preventing series damage to livestock.

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