Wolves Not Welcome? Zoning for Large Carnivore Conservation and Management under the Bern Convention and EU Habitats Directive
Forthcoming in Review of European, Comparative & International Environmental Law
25 Pages Posted: 29 May 2018
Date Written: May 17, 2018
With some exceptions, populations of bears, wolves, lynx and other large carnivores are recovering across Europe. Zoning is one of the means available to public authorities to promote large carnivore conservation while minimizing conflicts with human interests. In principle, this can entail designating zones where large carnivore conservation is prioritized over conflicting human interests, but also zones where the population density of large carnivores is adjusted to human activities, including low density areas or exclusion zones. Zoning as a large carnivore conservation and management tool is explored here in light of two influential European legal instruments, the Bern Convention and the EU Habitats Directive. Firstly, the various legal regimes that apply to large carnivores under these instruments in different parts of Europe by themselves provide for a distinct degree of high-level zoning. Secondly, and importantly, the Convention and Directive determine the legal bandwidth within which domestic authorities can design and implement more specific (sub)national zoning regimes.
Keywords: Zoning, Large Carnivores, Habitats Directive, Bern Convention, Human-Wildlife Conflict, Biodiversity Conservation, Wildlife Management, Wolf, Bear, Lynx, Wolverine, Golden Jackal
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