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Question General Licenses, Garden Shooting (yes, I Read The Sticky!)

Discussion in 'Hunting' started by AP3, Jun 25, 2019.

  1. AP3

    AP3 Member

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    Hi Everyone,

    I have Pigeons, Crows and Squirrels (and rats, but I'll take care of them) in my, rather large, garden.

    The Pigeons eat any grass seed I sow, and I can't net it as my dog gets tangled in the netting. I don't want to use bird scarers, as I want to attract songbirds to the garden.

    The crows and squirrels attack the eggs and fledglings of songbirds, and I've already seen one nest cleared by them.

    Can I legally shoot these on a GI, or do I need to apply for an individual license?

    Cheers,
    AP
     
    steevie dan likes this.
  2. pjgtech

    pjgtech The finest wines, we want em here, we want em now!

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    My (non lawyer) understanding is you can't shoot birds in your garden, period.
    Rats = yes
    Squirrels = yes
    The GL talks about crop damage, fowling livestock feed, public protection, etc, etc which does not apply to a private garden.
    NB: I don't hunt btw, so what do i know... :facepalm:
     
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  3. nav2009

    nav2009 Donator

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    The law has changed and you need to apply for an individual license for certain bird species such as wood pigeon. Concerning the magpie, RSPB have said that shooting magpies in defense of song birds is no longer a valid reason and they will seek to prosecute anyone doing so. Be careful and read about the recent law changes.
     
    steevie dan likes this.
  4. pjgtech

    pjgtech The finest wines, we want em here, we want em now!

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    Even in a private garden?
     
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  5. mike-carter

    mike-carter Pro Poster

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    I don't bloody believe this. A week or two back on the BASC website it stated "NO LICENCE REQUIRED" Has the sodding regs changed again?
     
    steevie dan likes this.
  6. PW1

    PW1 Shooting the breeze.

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    Fake news. You don't need to apply fora licence for wood pigeon.

    Regards
    Peter
     
  7. nav2009

    nav2009 Donator

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    Specifically in a private garden because a private garden is no different to a farm from a legal standpoint. In fact you are less likely to attract unwanted attention while controlling pest species on a farm than a private garden. The RSPB have issued a statement that there is no scientific evidence that magpie's are affecting song bird numbers. We all know that's utter rubbish but that is their claim, see here:
    https://www.rspb.org.uk/birds-and-w...bird-a-z/magpie/legal-magpie-control-methods/
    The recent changes to the law that include pigeons see here:-
    https://deframedia.blog.gov.uk/2019...arification-on-general-licences-for-shooting/
    Know the law before you take aim.
     
    steevie dan likes this.
  8. nav2009

    nav2009 Donator

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  9. PW1

    PW1 Shooting the breeze.

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    steevie dan likes this.
  10. pjgtech

    pjgtech The finest wines, we want em here, we want em now!

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    :facepalm: .... I'm still confused...!
    I thought one of the issues the licenses were revoked was due to people shooting birds whenever they saw them, even though other methods to control had not been tried, and people shooting birds in their gardens, when this was never allowed in the GL in the 1st place? As the GL was primarily a tool to protect larger rural lands, farms, etc and not private gardens.
     
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  11. Simonix

    Simonix Engaging Member

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    The general licences have been reinstated my Defra.

    Check the gov website out to see if your situation is covered by them.

    And try speaking with BASC or Defra for confirmation.
     
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  12. timmytree

    timmytree Big Poster

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    Sorry Nav, you are completely wrong. The new Gls allow for protection of songbirds. Jays cannot be shot for any other reason. Collard doves and gulls are off the GL altogether. Woodpigeon can be shot for crop protection and public health on a GL, no individual licence needed.
    For the OP, put up streamers over your grass seed, temporary fencing around the seeded area but avoid shooting in the garden unless no other option. If you do need to shoot, KEEP QUIET!
    GLs 34, 35 and 36 are very clear. If we're going to give information or advise let's get it bloody correct?
     
  13. timmytree

    timmytree Big Poster

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    That is out of date. DEFRA now control GLs and have issued new ones.
     
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  14. nav2009

    nav2009 Donator

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    Right, some light on it. DEFRA and the Government have indeed updated their websites after a new general license was issued in May of this year. However, there are some key points to take note of. It says you must apply for an individual license if you fall outside the guidelines of damaging crops. Whether you can shot them in gardens for eating grass seed is debatable and you'd need to read into it because your garden isn't classed as a business. As for magpies and song birds, the RSPB have shed light on that.
     
    steevie dan likes this.
  15. timmytree

    timmytree Big Poster

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    Correct, but new GLs have been issued by defra, how could NE be trusted when they were led by an RSPB eco activist?
    If shooters break the law again the new GLs will be pulled and all avian shooting for pests will go on individual licences.
    Why all the confusion? There's been hundreds of posts on here, BASC will advise and it's all online if people can be bothered to look.
     
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  16. nav2009

    nav2009 Donator

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    Yes, I never heard in the news or saw any amendments to the original proposal in April and I haven't shot quarry for a while and got behind with it myself, my apologies to all for being out of touch.
     
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  17. pjgtech

    pjgtech The finest wines, we want em here, we want em now!

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    So, going back to the OP original post, can he shoot birds in his garden under the GL or under an applied for individual licence, or not at all?
     
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  18. steevie dan

    steevie dan Big Poster

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  19. nav2009

    nav2009 Donator

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    It's confusing, GL34 says you can but the RSPB say you can't. The politics of it are immense. If you shoot a maggy how do you prove you shot if for conservation purposes? The RSPB say on their website there is no evidence that magpies are affecting song bird numbers. If you end up in court with RSPB prosecuting you, will GL34 protect you?
     
    Matool and steevie dan like this.
  20. steevie dan

    steevie dan Big Poster

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    Not really sure but I take it if it is in nesting season and you have active nesting in my garden flora then I am covered, but I may be wrong.
     

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