Government wants to expand cormorant hunting

16 May, 2022

Cormorants cause serious damage to Swedish fish stocks. Now the government wants to expand the hunt for the seabird whose corrosive stools and good appetite have made it an object of hatred among both fishermen and archipelago residents.

The Government has commissioned the Swedish Environmental Protection Agency and the Swedish Agency for Marine and Water Management to revise the national management plan for cormorants. The aim is to develop accurate and effective methods to reduce the damage to fisheries.

The authorities must also take stock of the number of cormorants, what damage they do and how much fish they eat.

“It’s about how the administration can be more efficient and effective, and how hunting and intimidation methods can be made more efficient,” says Minister for Rural Affairs Anna-Caren Sätherberg (S).

nesting cormorants
The corrosive feces of cormorants make the places they nest in look dead. But when the birds abandon a nesting site, the vegetation returns. Photo: Hasse Holmberg/TT

The cormorant population has increased sharply in Sweden for several years. The bird eats large quantities of fish, causing damage to fishing equipment.

The authorities’ assignments include, among other things, investigating multi-year culling decisions and investigating alternative ways of hunting and scaring the birds, in addition to the hunting that is currently conducted with firearms.

“It is important that we have coastal and sustainable fishing, and cormorants are not good for fishing. We simply want to see which methods work best. It is also about being able to expand the hunt and direct it towards the areas where it is needed most, says Sätherberg.

A proposal for a revised national management plan will be submitted to the Government on 30 November 2023. The documentation on cormorants’ eating habits will be completed by 30 November 2024.

Text: TT
Photo: Hasse Holmberg/TT

Related articles

A rift has emerged in the government between the Social Democrats and the Green Party. The Social Democrats have changed their footing on the issue of hunting for cormorants…
Text: Owe Nilsson/Lars Larsson/TT
Photo: Magnus Martinsson/Naturfotograferna/BL Bildbyrå/TT
According to many who work with the sea and wildlife, the cormorant causes significantly worse problems than those that we humans experience above the surface…
Report: Daniel Hedström
Photo: Simon Stanford, Leif Eiranson, Robert Westerberg
Jonas Hentati Sundberg is a marine biologist and has been researching guillemots, on Stora Karlsö, for almost two decades. When the island was closed down to tourists during the pandemic, he discovered something fascinating: The guillemots needed the tourists to survive…
Text: Fanny Jönsson
Scroll to Top