There have been repeated calls from lobbies of hunters and farmers to reduce protection for some protected species, and large carnivores in particular. Such calls want the challenges posed by coexisting with these animals to be tackled by an increase in hunting, and lowered protection.
Large carnivores like wolves and bears are endangered species according to the Habitats Directive 92/43/EEC, which is the first of the two Directives that protect European biodiversity. Adopted in 1992, the Habitats Directive protects certain species from exploitation and being removed from the wild. It lists over a thousand species of plants and animals as designated for various levels of protection.
The second is the Birds Directive 2009/147/EC, a legislation to protect European wild birds, which was adopted in 2009. It amended initial legislation laid down in the 1970s under Directive 79/409/EEC. As a result of the Directive, Special Protection Areas were developed for the protection and survival of designated species. Other protection levels were clarified, including the bird species that can be hunted and when, and the sustainable management of species. Guidance has also been issued for hunting under the Directive.