The State Office of Environment in Saxony-Anhalt has released their annual wolf-monitoring report for 2021, and there is good news for livestock owners.
More wolves, but fewer losses!
233 losses were reported due to wolves, down from 385 last year. This is significant, as losses had been increasing each year prior to this. The number of total depredations has also gone down by around a third, again curbing a previous upward trend. However, wolf numbers have continued to rise in the state, so the happy development in depredation numbers isn’t due to fewer wolves.
This is likely due to increased investment in livestock protection. Last year, farmers in the state received around 1 million Euro for livestock protection and damage compensation. This is set to rise to around 1.7 million for 2022. More fencing is being built on pastures, more livestock guarding dogs are being used in the field, and the local government is boosting livestock protection advice given to farmers. Overall, it’s a very promising sign that regional authorities are encouraging livestock protection as an essential tool for livestock owners.
Livestock protection measures – doing it right
Indeed, most livestock losses were reported to be due to either missing or insufficient livestock protection. The report stresses the importance of comprehensive and continuous pasture fencing throughout the year. This is why learning the proper implementation of protection measures is vital for preventing depredations, as well as the associated economic and emotional loss. LIFEstockProtect is making strides in preparation of the livestock protection courses for farmers in Austria, Bavaria and South Tyrol. The trainings are due to start in the coming months and will soon be available to book on the website.
Stay tuned for a project update!