Answers to the most frequent questions about the species.
To date, a legal killing of a wolf has never been authorized in Italy and the wolf is considered a strictly protected species.
For Austria, the Wolf is listed in Annex IV of the EU habitats directive and therefore is also strictly protected.
In France, the wolf is a strictly protected species following the translation into national law of the provisions of the 1979 Bern Convention on the conservation of European wildlife and natural habitats and the 1992 EU Directive on the conservation of natural habitats and wild fauna and flora (known as the Habitats Directive). France has had a species management plan in place since 2004. In addition to monitoring the state of the population, the French State also finances livestock protection measures and compensates farmers for losses due to wolf predation. The Habitats Directive allows lethal control of wolves to protect livestock if other measures have failed and if the vitality of the wolf population is not compromised by the levy. France has therefore established a protocol based on gradual interventions, depending on the severity and recurrence of wolf attacks against a particular flock. The interventions are strictly monitored and applied by public agents. In the worst case, a dedicated unit of the Office Français Biodiversité is in charge of implementing lethal control.
The Large Carnivore Initiative for Europe”(LCIE), an expert group on large carnivores, has provided guidelines on the terminology and management of “bold” wolves. A basic level of habituation to humans is vital for wild animals living in human-made landscapes in Europe: it is not considered problematic if wolves tolerate people, buildings and human activities staying at a certain distance without showing any direct interest in people themselves. However, when this adaptive process becomes strong and consolidated as a result of repeated positive stimuli (e.g. feeding), wolves can change their natural behaviour and become confident i.e. bold. A confident wolf no longer recognizes humans as a threat, tolerates the presence of people by actively approaching them at close range (less than 30 m), even repeatedly. For these potentially dangerous animals, specific management is indicated by the LCIE.