22/10/2012 Deenihan bans the hunting of Curlew
Jimmy Deenihan, T.D., Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht announced today (Monday, 22 October 2012) that the Curlew has been removed from the Open Season for hunting wild game birds. The Curlew has traditionally had a one month hunting season (November) each year but hunting curlew is now being stopped as these birds are considered threatened from a conservation perspective.
The Minister said “A number of surveys and studies in the past year have estimated a rather dramatic reduction in the total number of breeding pairs of Curlew in the country. These estimates indicate a decrease ranging from 60% to 96%.
The Curlew has been red-listed as a globally threatened species by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) since 2007. The European population is experiencing similar problems and has been evaluated as declining.
The Minister added that “This decision will be welcomed by conservationists and hunters. I am aware that some hunting bodies have already introduced voluntary hunting bans for the curlew and I commend them for this action. It is expected that further research on this and other bird species by way of Species Action Plans will assist in understanding the factors involved in their decline”, concluded the Minister.