Romania has banned all trophy hunting of brown bears, wolves, lynx and wild cats in a surprise decision that gives Europe’s largest population of large carnivores a reprieve from its most severe and immediate threat.

“Hunting for money was already illegal, but it was given a green light anyway,” environment minster, Cristiana Pasca-Palmer, told the Guardian. ‘The damages [clause in the habitats directive] acted as a cover for trophy hunting.”

Announced late on Tuesday evening, the ban is expected to divide Romania’s population, pitching rural and urban dwellers against each other. The government’s decision has strong support in the larger cities, which have seen a growing movement against hunting in recent months. But in much of Romania’s remote countryside large carnivores are a daily threat to villagers and a persistent nuisance to livestock farmers, and many see hunting as the only solution.

The ministry of environment have discussed the possibility of relocating the target animals abroad to countries interested in ‘rewilding’.

The ban comes amid a growing push for the protection of Romania’s wild mountains that has seen anti-corruption officers convict dozens of foresters, hunters and local officials in recent years.

Photo Credit: Agnes Thiebaut 

Gabriel Paun, an activist and conservationist behind a petition that collected 11,000 signatures in the weeks before the hunting ban, sees the government’s decision as a step towards a safer future for Europe’s wild spaces: “The Carpathian mountains are home to more biodiversity than anywhere else in Europe, but for too long they have been ruthlessly exploited for forestry and hunting. Let’s hope the government’s decision is a sign of things to come.”

Responses to "Romania bans trophy hunting of brown bears, wolves, lynx and wild cats "

  1. Anonymous says:

    Bravo Romania! According to a recent WWF report, over 50% of the world's wildlife has disappeared within the last 40 years due to human interference. It has become critical that the countries of the world take responsibility for protecting and conserving these precious species. Measures must be taken to relocate the animals to suitable countries which are 're-wilding' and also to encourage cooperation (alternative deterrents) with ranchers and others who see wild animals as a threat to their livelihood.

  2. stop destroying gods creatures they are not yours to kill

  3. ernie meyer says:

    congratulations on the protection of these animals.

  4. Unknown says:

    Thank you Romania

  5. Anonymous says:

    thank you thank you ,now deers,rabbits

  6. Unknown says:

    Romania has the good sense to protect its wildlife. Hello, America?

  7. RAMWolff says:


  8. Unknown says:

    We need this in Canada,Lots of trophy hunts coming from around the world,cuz they killed all their animals.Good for you Romania

  9. ernie says:

    good for them . A country that is leading the way in conservation of wildlife...wonderful

  10. vmad says:

    Thank you for stepping up to save our wild animals.!!

  11. Unknown says:

    Be vegan. Stop breeding and killing all animals.

  12. It may be that there are not sufficient populations of these animals to allow hunting. In that case I applaud this. on the other hand, if hunting is a necessary management tool, by all means use it.

  13. Romania MUST stop the logging of forests and keep the habitat for these animals. The very corrupted Romania, starting with its government and everyone else with a greed for money have destroyed all forests and left these animals without food nor shelter. These animals now wonder through villages and on highways looking and begging for food. Humans will only see these animals as being dangerous around them and will kill them no matter what laws they have in place. STOP LOGGING THE FORESTS, DON'T DESTROY ANIMALS' HABITAT, LET THEM LIVE IN THEIR HOME!!!!

    Now it's time for people in Russia, China, Norway and America to wake up, and not just play Rambo and Cowboys all the time.

  15. country boy says:

    how many of you actually live where the wolves will be snatching up your pets or livestock? How many of you have had wild bears within a few feet of you? Youre not above the natural world...we are a part of it. Some day your cities will burn and then you'll start to understand.

  16. Wspaniała decyzja, gratulacje iwyrazy szacunku dla swiatłego społeczeństwa Rumunii.

  17. Unknown says:

    We need to treat the Beauty-full & Wonder-full Flora & Fauna of our World with Love, Care & Respect if we are to save Terra from the terrible ravages we, ourselves have inflicted.....We skate on very thin ice but if we fail we also doom Life!

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