Schäfer in the Palatinate about the wolf – SWR Aktuell

One wolf is currently in the Palatinate Forest. This animal is already causing discontent among some livestock owners. There have been a few wolf cracks lately.

The last known wolf to kill from the West Palatinate dates back to August 11-15. Laboratory samples taken from experts at the Lynx and Wolves Coordination Center in Tripstadt, KLUWO in short, were able to establish that two sheep from Rosenkopf in the southwest Palatinate and two goats from Martinshöhe in the Kaiserslautern region were killed by a wolf.

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Since mid-July this year, there have been various attacks of wolves on cattle in the Palatinate. Experts now confirm two new attacks.
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Cattlemen must be compensated for the tears of the wolves

KLUWO’s Julian Sandrini says livestock owners should be financially compensated for animals killed by the wolf. In cooperation with the Chamber of Agriculture, the value of the shredded animal on the market is determined. The amount is then paid to the livestock owner as compensation. According to Julian Sandrini, KLUWO also covers follow-up costs to the vet in the event an animal is injured by a wolf.

Palatinate can be set as a protective area

Julian Sandrini explains that if a wolf settled in the Palatinate Forest, and over time a whole group gathered together, then the Palatinate could be classified as the so-called prevention zone. In such an area, breeders of sheep, goats and game animals will have the opportunity to make the federal and state governments strengthen protection measures against wolves. This can be, for example, a wooden fence, an electric fence, or even a livestock guard dog.



Shepherds fear that wolves will kill their sheep.  (Photo: picture-alliance/Report Services, Picture Alliance)

Shepherds fear that wolves will kill their sheep.


Alliance Pictures / Services Report



Photo Alliance


At the same time, the exclusion zone will oblige the guards to protect their animals. Julian Sandrini explains that those who erect a protective fence within a year of designating such an area will be compensated 100 percent for financial damage if the wolf is killed. In the second year there is still 50 percent for the torn animal, from the third year there is no further payout. To date, three protective areas have been identified under the responsibility of KLUWO – Taunus, Eifel and Westerwald.

Professional Shepherds in the West Palatinate have had protective fences for years

Sven Keeler is the second generation to run the Wasgau sheep farm in Posenburg. The farm has been raising sheep since 1990. Sven Keller currently has a herd of around 600 sheep. Even without specifying the Palatinate as a protective area, he has been protecting his sheep with appropriate protective fences for years. He would also recommend this to his colleagues and sheep breeders. He explains that only if the shepherds do their part can they coexist peacefully with the wolf.

The wolf is good for the forest

Although Sven Keeler isn’t entirely happy with the werewolf, he doesn’t have anything against it either. The wolf is good for the forest. It can help reduce deer overpopulation, for example. At the same time, Sven Keeler points out that there should not be an overcrowding of wolves. Especially if there are so-called problem wolves tampering with fenced flocks of sheep out of convenience, the wolf should be included in the hunting law.



Sven Keeler is the second generation running the Wasgau sheep farm in Busenberg near Dahn.  He says: We must learn to live with the wolf.  (Photo: SWR)

Sven Keeler is the second generation running the Wasgau sheep farm in Busenberg near Dahn. He says: We must learn to live with the wolf.


SWR



The wolf is an intelligent animal. For example, if two or three animals from the herd are shot, the learning effect will occur. The wolf will then realize that being close to humans and sheep is dangerous and will focus on hunting the fallow deer and reappear.

Shepherds have different opinions about wolves

Sven Keeler is in close contact with other fellow sponsors from the area. He says opinions vary widely. About half of them see the wolf as an evolution with which one must learn to live, while the other half advocate wolf hunting.



Insufficiently secured sheep can be easy prey for a wolf.  (Photo: picture-alliance/Report Services, Picture Alliance)

Insufficiently secured sheep can be easy prey for a wolf.


Alliance Pictures / Services Report



Photo Alliance


Living together is necessary in the long run

Sven Keeler explains that if the wolf does indeed settle in the Palatinate for the long term, then humans and especially a shepherd or cattle owner must learn to live with them.

“I don’t think we can get rid of the wolf in the long run. We just have to learn to live with it. There’s no point in scolding or rushing.”

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