Norway has decided to cull two-thirds of its wolves citing harm done to livestock by the animals. The proposal that was approved on Friday was strongly criticised by environmental groups. There are only 68 wolves in the country, of which 47 will be shot, reported The Guardian.
The green groups who are opposing the step said this is the most number of wolves that the country has decided to kill in a year since 1911. Nina Jensen, chief executive of WWF in Norway, said, "This is mass slaughter. We have not seen anything like this in a hundred years, back when the policy was that all large carnivores were to be eradicated." According to the activists, the damage done to the farmers by the wolves, who prey on their sheep, was being blown out of proportion.
Jenson said, "Shooting 70% of the wolf population is not worthy of a nation claiming to be championing environmental causes." She said the Norwegian parliament had decided in 2004 and 2011 that carnivores should be allowed to co-exist with livestock.
Silje Ask Lundberg, chair of Friends of the Earth Norway, said, "This decision must be stopped. With this decision, three out of six family groups of wolves might be shot. We are calling on the minister of environment to stop the butchering. Today, Norway should be ashamed."
Hunting is a popular sport in the country. In 2015, 11,000 people applied for licenses to hunt 16 wolves. The animals were listed as "critically endangered" in the country the same year, according to phys.org.