Legal status

In the Free State of Saxony, the wolf is granted the following statutory protection status under:

International law

The Washington Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) (Annex II)

Berne Convention (Annex II).

European law

EU Directive 338/97 (Annex A) and

Council Directive 92/43/EEC on the Conservation of Natural Habitats and of Wild Fauna and Flora (FFH) (Annex II, priority species, Annex IV, Articles 12 and 16).

German federal law

German Federal Nature Conservation Act (strictly protected species pursuant to section 7 subsection 2 no. 13 in conjunction with section 44) and

Animal Welfare Act

Saxon regional law

Saxon Nature Conservation Act

Saxon Hunting Act and Saxon Hunting Decree

Pursuant to EU law, the wolf as a FFH species pursuant to Annex II (priority species) and Annex IV has the highest protection status in Germany. The objective formulated by the EU is the maintenance or re-establishment of a favourable conservation status of the priority species for it.

As defined in the "Guidelines for Population Level Management Plans for Large Carnivores in Europe" (Linnell 2008), around 1,000 adult individuals are enough to achieve the favourable conservation status of an isolated wolf population. If a population has sufficient connectivity to other populations to allow immigrants to have a genetic and demographic impact, there would in principle only need to be more than 250 mature individuals in the population for it to be classed as of "least concern".

The strict protection of the wolf in Germany is independent of the species' conservation status. After achieving a favourable conservation status, the Free State of Saxony can thus not initiate any changes on its own but has to agree these at a national level with the neighbouring countries, notably Poland, and obtain approval from the EU.

Specifically, the Free State of Saxony has the task of making a positive contribution to a favourable conservation status of the central European lowland population.

According to the FFH directive, "all forms of deliberate capture or killing ..." and "... deliberate disturbance ..." and "... deterioration or destruction of breeding sites or resting places ..." are prohibited. The German Federal Nature Conservation Act (BNatSchG) and the Saxon Hunting Act (SächsJagdG) have adopted these requirements in full. The wolf is strictly protected according to section 7 subsection 2 no. 14 and section 44 of the BNatSchG.

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