An Action Plan for the European Wolf has been adopted

22 Jul, 2022 | 16:24


An action plan for the European wolf under the Biodiversity Act has been approved. The plan was developed by the wildlife association “Balkani” through a process that started back in 2008 with the participation of all stakeholders. The action plan was adopted by decision of the National Council for Biological Diversity (Protocol No. 23 of 07.12.2018) after incorporating the final amednments by the Council. It has now been finally approved by the Executive Director of the Forestry Executive Agency.

The plan is based on the understanding that human-wolf conflict needs to be minimized. It is necessary to increase the commitment and mutual cooperation by stakeholders for the better management of the wolf population in order to ensure the long-term existence of the species in Bulgaria.

The wolf is included in Appendices No. 2 and 4 of the Biodiversity Act, Council Directive 92/43/EEC of 21 May 1992 on the protection of natural habitats and wild flora and fauna (Habitats Directive), the Convention on protection of European flora and fauna and natural habitats (Bern Convention), the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (Washington Convention, CITES), Council of Europe Regulation No. 338/97 of 9.12.1996 for the protection of species of wild flora and fauna by regulating trade in these. The Council of Europe’s European Wolf Action Plan also applies to the species.

By order of the Minister of Agriculture, a permanent national commission for the wolf will be formed with representatives of the following institutions and organizations: Ministry of Health, Ministry of Education, Forestry Executive Agency, Environment Executive Agency, scientific institutes and universities, hunting organizations, nature protection organizations. The National Wolf Commission will discuss and make decisions regarding all important issues related to the management of the wolf population in Bulgaria (monitoring, hunting regimes, habitat protection, etc.). Sociological surveys will be conducted among different social groups about the attitude and knowledge regarding legislative implementation, various economic tools will be applied to benefit from the presence of the species in Bulgaria and the implementation of the legislation will be monitored. The commission will work to minimize the human-wolf conflict and will carry out various activities aimed at better management of the population of the species in Bulgaria.

The action plan envisages declaring a hunting ban period from 1 April to 30 June. The reasons for this are advanced pregnancy in females in this period; the period of birth and rearing of the young; potential increase in damage to domestic animals if an adult is killed in the early stage of rearing the young; limiting the factors that create prerequisites for increasing inbreeding and/or hybridization of the wolf with the domestic dog. Within the hunting ban period, compensation for wolf damage will be paid by the Ministry of Environment and Water through an upcoming amendment to the Hunting and Game Conservation Act.

The action plan is available on the website of the Ministry of Environment and Water: