[Article updated September 12 at 15:05 with further details on the hunt in France]
Hunting season in many regions of France has opened amid controversy, with walkers expressing fears and environmentalists claiming forests need a break after a summer of drought and fires.
For many fishermen across France, the season opened yesterday (Sunday 11 September) and will run until late February.
One, Tristan Chanafat, in Saint-Didier-sous-Rivere (Rhone), BFMTV said: “We’ve had an overcrowding of rabbits for months. Since my father is a farmer, we know they can cause damage.”
Environmentalists say forests have been destroyed by scorching temperatures and drought, rivers and water sources are low, and migratory birds have already left for the season.
Walkers also said they dread the hunting season, which they claim makes hiking and exploring the countryside too risky. Some said they did not like the sounds of gunshots.
One hiker said, “It bothers me a lot. It just means we don’t go up that much.”
Read more: La chase 2021: How to stop poachers from using your land in France
Read more: Is there a way to check if there is a fishing operation near me in France?
Last year there were 90 accidents during the season, including eight that were fatal.
This was more than in 2020-21, but fewer than 232 accidents were reported in 1999-2000 and 131 in 2009-2010.
Read more: Are hunting accidents becoming more or less frequent in France?
READ MORE: Hunter, 82, was accidentally killed by another hunter in Brittany
Earlier this year, 25-year-old Melody Cuvé was accidentally killed on February 19 while walking with her partner in Casaños (Cantal).
She was walking on a designated road but was shot during a wild boar hunting at about 15:00. She died at the scene after being hit in the left side of her body. The shooter was charged with manslaughter.
Cuvett’s death sparked renewed calls for zero-hunting days and stricter rules for hog hunting. At least one mayor later issued ordinances banning the use of guns and bullets in their community in protest.
READ MORE: Calls for a fishing-free day in France double after the murder of a 25-year-old parker
Read more: How often do fishing accidents occur in France?
In response to the controversy, the president of the National Parker Association, Willie Sherin, said people should wear high-visibility jackets when walking, and added that hikers can simply “walk the house”.
He called on trekkers to be tolerant and said he would “never give moral lessons to vegans to change them”.
For the dates of this hunting season, see the map over here.
the hunt (no chase) It is the third favorite leisure activity for people in France, with five million people getting permis de chasser Fishing permit at some point. Of this number, there were about 1,173,000 “active” fishermen in 2021, making France the European country with the largest number of fishermen.
There are 91 species that can be hunted in France, and pigeons, pheasants and rabbits are the most popular prey.
From next February, poachers will not be allowed to use bullets around wetlands. Currently, 8000 tons of lead are scattered in nature every year due to hunting, poisoning humans and wildlife.
Therefore, EU legislation aims to reduce the potential for exposure to lead. The National Pursuit Federation is asking the state to provide funding to replace old lead pistols.
last november, Senate The case for hiking during the hunting season in response to a petition that called for stricter rules and “no-hunting” days. It is scheduled to reveal its conclusions on the matter next week.
Likewise, the Senate has examined Petition against badger hunting Digging, after more than 100,000 people signed the letter in less than six months. The petition denounced this act as a “violent and futile fishing practice”.
A spokesperson for the Wild Animal Association l’Ass Association pour la protection des animaux sauvages said the practice is “particularly appalling because it consists of removing badgers directly from their burrows”.
The petition’s signatories say this technique, called “underground rooting”, is “violent, unnecessary, non-selective, and incompatible with the recognition of animals as sentient beings.”
The Senate considered the petition yesterday and can now demand further action. This can include carrying out more checks, adding a bill to a hearing, or calling for a public discussion on the issue. The next meeting of the Presidents’ Forum is scheduled for September 21.
In turn, the Senate also debated a petition against anti-hunting activists asking questions about their alleged financial benefits and association donations. These conclusions are expected in early October.
Hunter, 17, was questioned after a woman was shot dead on a walking path in France
Fisherman in the chest, bullet hits car: more hunting accidents in France
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