There coexistence between wolf and man in Italy it is a current theme that warms souls with different positions. Among animal rights activists, environmentalists and more, there are those who defend the predator with weapons drawn due to the strategic importance it has in biodiversity. On the other hand, there are those who instead consider it a threat, as in the case of some Northern Regions that have gone so far as to urge its killing.
Requests that seem to forget the community legislation and the international conventions for which the wolf is a protected species. We recall that this great European predator had disappeared from the Alps at the beginning of the twentieth century due to the persecution of man, to be then reintroduced. Over the years, wide-ranging initiatives have been launched to protect animals such as LIFE WolfAlps, a European project aimed at the conservation and long-term management of the wolf population.
Now in our country there is good news in favor of the animal. Following a consultation process of Regions, Autonomous Provinces, ISPRA and various stakeholders, the Ministry of the Environment and the Protection of the Territory and the Sea has developed the new "Wolf conservation and management plan in Italy", which replaces that of 2002.
The new Piano Lupo
The drafting of the document involved a long and complex job. The plan includes 22 actions which, starting from an accurate technical-scientific analysis, aim at the conservation and sustainable resolution of conflicts with anthropogenic activities.
As emerges from the words of the Minister Costa, the plan's goal is to protect the species. The document therefore reiterates that the culls are not necessary. "To the activity of the wolf"- explains the Minister of the Environment -"more damage is attributed than it actually produces. Hence the particular attention paid to the problem of hybrids and to sterilization as an appropriate intervention tool“.
According to Costa, it is necessary to know as accurately as possible the actual number of wolves present in Italy, because "often we cry 'wolf, wolf' but they are hybrids or wandering dogs". As the Minister explains, “active and diversified prevention of possible conflicts” is also needed. Among the numerous innovations introduced in the plan, prevention actions are therefore envisaged with experimental interventions aimed at specific territorial areas, in some limited cases, which are affected by unique problems.
The measure attracted the approval of Legambiente. "It is a plan necessary for the conservation and protection of this important predator, which enhances the path tested in the Apennines with the Life Wolfnet project, and rightly focuses on the prevention of predation on grazing animals and on the resolution of conflicts with farmers, giving up selective killing, which are in no way useful for a long-term coexistence strategy“, He declares Antonio Nicoletti, Head of Protected Areas and Biodiversity of Legambiente. The environmental association hopes that the Regions will ratify the provision quickly and that the necessary resources will be allocated to implement preventive solutions.
Equally positive is the comment of the WWF, according to which we are faced with a plan capable of making a difference, promoting research and monitoring, fighting poaching and supporting damage prevention actions, which represent the best response to human conflicts. -wolf.
The European Commission itself has expressed appreciation for the measure which now must however overcome the most difficult obstacle: the scrutiny of State-Regions Conference. And it is not certain that it surpasses it: several Northern Regions, in fact, have long since expressed themselves on the hypothesis of killing wolves. A hypothesis, we reiterate, absent in the plan launched by the Ministry of the Environment. We await the future developments of the affair.