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Hunting license (Catalonia)


Brief description of the instrument and its modus operandi

The hunting license is a nominal document that any person that hunts on the Catalan territory has to own. One can obtain it throughout the payment of a fee depending on the type of license.

Which problem the instrument is supposed to solve?

The problem addressed is the excess of certain species or rarity of some others, that is to say the regulation of the hunting potential of some areas in Catalonia. The license provides a certain guarantee of the hunter skills (they need to pass medical tests and some exams)

Purpose or main objective / overall goal of the instrument?

Main objective: reinvest the money earned with the payment of the licenses into the management, conservation, repopulation and the vigilance of hunting and habitats.

Side objectives/goals of the instrument?

Control of the number of hunters, guarantee that they have minimum requirement for doing this activity

Innovation content or potential of the instrument?

No innovation.

Which laws and regulations support the implement of this instrument?

  1. Law 42/2007 of 13th of December of Natural Patrimony and Biodiversity
  2. Royal Decree 316/2000 of 3rd of March that modifies the precepts of the weapon Regulation in relation with the licenses and weapon reviews
  3. Royal Decree 137/1993 of 29th of January that approves the weapon regulation
  4. Law 1/1970 of 4th of April of hunting (sets the obligation of owning the license for hunting)
  5. Decree 506/1971 of 25th of March that approves the Regulation for the execution of the hunting law of 1970
  6. Order of 17th of June of 1999 that defines the species that can be hunted in Catalonia
  7. Decree 165/1998 of 8th of July about hunting areas with special regulations
  8. Order of 7th of June of 1995 of regulation of cattle breeding farms that host game species
  9. Decree 108/1985 of 25th of April that creates the Catalan hunting councils of Barcelona, Girona, Lleida and Tarragona
  10. There are also all the annual Orders in which the Catalan Government publishes each year the period during which hunting is allowed (2011-2012, 2013-2014, etc)

The initiator/promoter of the instrument?

Government agency: Spanish Government

Which organizations are involved in the operationalization of the instrument?

Catalan scope:

Department of Agriculture, Livestock,Food and Natural Environment (DAAM) and specifically the Area of hunting activities // - The Catalan hunting council (Consell de Caça de Catalunya) .

What roles do these organisations play in each of them?

Catalan scope:

Department of Agriculture, Livestock,Food and Natural Environment (DAAM) and specifically the Area of hunting activities (organism in charge of delivering the hunting licenses) //

The Catalan hunting council (Consell de Caça de Catalunya) is an advice organism that depends on the DAAM and is composed with 40 members of the Catalan Government and Administrations. For example they are in charge of studying the measures or tests needed to obtain the license.

How the monitoring is ensured?

Hunting license: the article 40.1 of the hunting law states that the competent authorities regarding the monitoring of hunting activities are the Spanish policy (Guardia Civil), the policy of fishing, hunting and National Parks, the forest and patrimony guards, the guards of the National Reserves of hunting, the rural agents and the maritime police. According to the article 40 and articles from the 1st chapter (crimes and hunting offences) and 2nd one (Administrative hunting infractions), there are a series of infractions for which the competent public authorities are allowed to fine hunters. Therefore one of the ways to ensure the monitoring of hunting is the forest guards’ surveillance and control of hunters’ licenses but also the presence in situ of signs and/or fence (“zone of private hunting”) and the delivering of license for hunting and in the case of hunting with weapon the permit for carrying one. The hunting license is delivered by the Catalan Government this way they make a record of who owns it thus in case of infraction it is easier to find the person responsible for it.

How the compliance is ensured?

Hunting license: according to the article 42 of the Spanish hunting Law, the hunting crimes could be punished with fees of 30 to 300 Euros and also depriving the hunter of his/her license as well as his/her right to obtain another one in the next 5 years following the infraction. // In the case of hunting offence, the article 43 of the hunting law foresees fines of 1, 5€ to 30 €.

How is the overall performance of the instrument?

Hunting license: this instrument permitted the creation of hunting clubs and federations of clubs and converted hunting into a sport. Nowadays, the Catalan Hunting Federation is one of the Federations with the major number of affiliated just after the soccer federation. (Source: “Els clubs esportius a Catalunya”editat al 2010 pel Consell Català de l’Esport (pages 25 & 111) This fact demonstrates the “socialization” effect of collective activities and at the mean time the importance of sports that take place in nature. Other indicators: number of hunting licenses delivered between 1992 (114 licenses) and 2011 (62 licenses) in 20 years, it decreased almost by 50% // It is an instrument that was created to develop hunting as a sustainable activity, we have the proof with the increase in the reserves of wild life that increased in a continuous way between 1999 and 2012 (in 1999, 3.143 hectares and in 2012 more than 12.000). Regarding the areas hunting refuges, controlled hunting areas and national hunting reserves, the superficies haven’t been increasing between 1999 and 2012 but rather maintaining themselves therefore it wouldn’t be a significant indicator.

Brief description of the context for the emergence of the instrument

Hunting: > interviews, perception of too many hunters, no sustainability of the game, problems of unclear forest access & hunting rights, and potential harms to non-hunters

Have any of the items mentioned above changed since the instrument entered into force?



Hunting: list of species that can be or not hunt have changed since 1970; hunting plans; compensatory payments for game-related damages

What are the main reasons or drivers behind changes mentioned?

Hunting: Directive Habitats


In process: Hunting: there are annual reports from the Regional Government with statistics (no authorisations)

Year 1970
Policy area forestry
Affected activity Harvesting/Production, Marketing/trade
Affected actors Landowner/land manager, Picker/harvester/hunter, Processor, Retailer
Products Game
Subject NWFP
Promoter/initiator Public
Zone South West Europe
Countries Spain
Regions (NUTS 2) Catalonia
Focus on NWFP Direct
Document category Instrument
Instrument type Regulatory
Legal status Binding
Geographical scope National
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