Position Statement on Lifting the Ban on Hunting of Red List Species in Georgia

19 January 2012

On 10th January 2012 the Georgian Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources published the following annual hunting quotas: Coypu 194, Hare 615, Badger 168, Pine marten 157, Stone marten 157, Grey wolf 120, Golden jackal 1453, Red fox 162, Wild cat 77, Wild boar 189, Roe deer 417, Racoon 96, Pheasant 416, Chukkar partridge 713, Black francolin - 50.

In our opinion, the above hunting quotas lack any scientific background because there have been no nationwide assessments of these species in Georgia and their population numbers are not known. It is also unclear what methods have been used to calculate the above numbers with such a peculiar accuracy (e.g. Wild boar 189). It is extremely difficult to see any logic in those numbers e.g. a very high level harvest quota is set on golden jackal (1453), while only 96 is set on the raccoon, an alien and highly invasive species in Georgia.

Inadequate hunting quotas may be just as harmful to the wildlife as is illegal hunting especially in the situation where the quotas are not allocated by district. However with the recent governmental decision to lift the ban on red list species hunting, should the hunting quotas be set in the same manner, the consequences will be far more devastating certain species may simply go extinct in Georgia!

 

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