‘Serious ecological assault’: Wild Justice seeks judicial review over gamebird releases

Chris Packham’s legal outfit Wild Justice has begun a fresh legal challenge over the impacts of gamebirds releases on EU-protected sites.

The not-for-profit confirmed yesterday that it had applied to the courts for judicial review over DEFRA’s alleged failure to assess the ecological impacts of pheasant and red-legged partridge releases on or near legally protected special protection areas (SPAs) and special areas of conservation (SACs), as required under Article 6(3) of the Habitats Directive.

The legal outfit believes that any new gamebird releases taking place after July of this year would be illegal, “unless the possibility of them having detrimental impacts on the sites in question had been properly considered and specifically ruled out ahead of time” – namely once an appropriate assessment had been considered under the Habitats Regulations. 

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