When Defra issued the current General Licences in June, they also said they would also be consulting on future licensing options here. To decide what will replace the existing licences, which expire on 29th February 2020, a twelve-week review, has begun. Since they already have information received from the 4,000 responses submitted to their consultation in May, they are exploring what other information they can glean.
Part 1 – users of the licences
Users of the licences have the opportunity share how exactly they need and use these licences by completing a detailed survey. Where other scientific evidence is limited this information is particularly important.
Part 2 – organisations
To deal with some of the more challenging issues Defra will be hosting workshop meetings with a wide range of organisations. These discussions will consider the use of licences on protected sites, such as Special Protection Areas (to protect species of conservation concern) which were excluded from the licences issued in June.
What are Defra actually trying to achieve?
They want a robust licensing system that strikes the right balance between the protection of wild birds and the needs of landowners and farmers to protect livestock, crops and species of conservation concern.
Okay, where can I submit evidence?
As with the consultation in May, users have a choice. We recommend people complete the survey through the GWCT website (the page will soon be available) and we will collate, anonymise and submit it to Defra for you or you can contact Defra direct.
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