Court says no to paintballing wolves, in latest legal twist


Wildlife rangers have again been banned from using paintball guns to scare off over-friendly wolves, three weeks after Gelderland province gave the green light to the plan.

The ruling is the latest step in a long-running stand-off between provincial authorities and conservationists, who argue that the real problem is with tourists using food to lure the wolves close enough to be photographed.

Arnhem district court said on Thursday that Gelderland provincial officials cannot attempt to drive away wolves using paintball guns after all, following intervention by animal protection group Faunabescherming.

Faunabescherming argues the move could lead to serious injuries and conflicts with EU legislation for dealing with protected species.

Officials wanted to paintball a wolf in the northern Veluwe area, which is regularly spotted by locals and which no longer avoids people.

Four months ago the same court ruled that paintballing wolves would be the best option to scare them off.

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