Geneva, September 27 (EFE). – The Swiss decided today in a referendum to preserve the national protection of the wolf, which is a semi-extinct animal in the country for 25 years but has been restored, in the face of legal proposals that called for more freedom to hunt it, due to the increase in this predator’s attacks on livestock.
With 51.92% of the vote, voters today decided to repeal the new National Hunting Law that has already been approved by the Federal Parliament and the government, but it can still be challenged in a popular consultation.
The new law sought to authorize preventive hunting of wolves if they were seen too close to residents or livestock farms, something that some rural communities in the country required, as between 300 and 500 head of cattle are killed each year by these predators.
So far, hunting and killing wolves was exceptionally permissible only if they caused the death of 25 head of cattle in one place during a period of one month.
In the mid-1990s, there were no longer wolves on Swiss soil, but they were re-introduced and their population slowly increasing, so it is estimated that there are currently around 80 specimens, and it appears that in some areas they have already begun to form hunting groups. in a group.
Plebiscite sponsors argued, in contrast to the new hunting law (which was to replace an earlier law from 1986), that wolf hunting would, contrary to what was intended, lead to a greater increase in attacks on livestock.
According to their arguments, hunting wolves means breaking up herds, and many of these specimens will return to hunt prey on their own, and will resort more to sheep and goats, which are easier to obtain than in the larger pieces and in the wild.
“No” won for more wolf hunting permitted, especially in urban areas in Switzerland (Geneva, Zurich, Bern, Basel), which contributed decisively to the victory given its larger population, but in more than half the years. In the country’s cantons, and especially in rural areas, the majority voted “yes”. EFE