PEST SPECIES CAN ONLY BE SHOT:
1: If you have the landowner’s permission to shoot them.
If you don’t have this (and it should preferably be given in writing) you could be committing the serious crime of “armed trespass)
If you shoot quarry without permission, you could be prosecuted for poaching.
[Bear in mind if your club has been given permission to shoot targets on someone’s land, it does not give you, or other members, permission to shoot vermin or pests on that site, during club shoots or any other time.]
2: If a bird pest species is actually a pest to the land owner.
- The act says that a bird becomes a pest if it is:
- Threatening wild bird populations.
- Endangering public health
- Spreading disease
- Causing serious damage to livestock, crops, fisheries, young trees or waterways.
There are other laws, not in the Wildlife & Countryside Act, about cruelty to animals – including purposefully wounding any animal, including pest species. Prosecution can carry heavy penalties.
For more information visit www.naturalengland.org.uk (List dated 1/1/2010 to 31/12/2010)
Game Species & Wildfowl
There are other birds and animals that can be shot under the Wildlife and Countryside Act – but they are not for air gunners.
Although it is not illegal to shoot them, it is considered unsporting and bearing in mind an airgun’s power level, unlikely to kill them cleanly – and you will make yourself very unpopular with landowners, gamekeepers and other shooters if you do!
These species can only be shot at certain times of the year.
- Common Snipe
- Golden Plover
These can only be shot at certain times of the year. The BASC and sensible shooters encourage the use of shotguns only, for these species.
- Ducks: Godwall, Goldeneye, Mallard, Pintail, Pochard, Shoveller, Tufted, Teal , Wigeon
- Canada, Greylag, Pink-footed