Which animal kills more sheep?

hAnd the wolf, the fox – or even the golden jackal? The State Environment Office (LfU) has identified seven wolves killed in Bavaria by spring 2022 using genetic analyzes; In eight cases, a dog killed livestock. The observation year began on May 1, 2021 and ended on April 30, 2022, the spokesperson explained.

The cases of torn animals in the Amer Mountains are currently causing an uproar. In the summer, shredded sheep were reported to the state office. Fearing for their herds, alpine farmers brought the animals into the valley earlier than usual.

Ten dead animals were examined in detail. The results: a dog responsible for sheep’s tears. However, experts also found wolf DNA in the samples. This means that wolf involvement cannot be ruled out.

In the case of poaching dogs, the owner has a duty

This finding is important for the affected farmers – as it relates to compensation for the damage they have suffered. LfU writes: “Given the confirmed wolf involvement and the close spatial and temporal synchronization of events, damages compensation is awarded in all cases.” If the dog is solely responsible for dead animals, there will be no government payments. Dog owners are then obligated, if known.

So which animal is more dangerous to sheep or calves in the pasture – the wolf or the dog? A spokesman for the Bavarian Farmers’ Union (BBV) said there was no general answer: “Every dog ​​is different – and every dog ​​can suddenly follow their hunting instinct.”

For many years, the BBV has been requiring dog owners to use a leash when walking their dogs in woods and fields. “In some areas, there is also a leash requirement in certain areas or at certain times.” There is good reason for this regulation: “If a dog attacks a flock of sheep, for example, individual animals or even a flock can panic or even break out. The dog and the flock are served when the dog is on a leash.”

The golden jackal was discovered in Bavaria in 2012

In addition to wolves and dogs, LfU identified the golden jackal as the cause of one case in its 2021/22 observation year. The golden jackal lives in Southeast Asia and Southeast Europe, among other places. It is also now seen more and more in Northern and Western Europe. The first animal of the genus was discovered in Bavaria in 2012. In four cases foxes killed animals.

In Bavaria there is a wolf management plan to protect livestock on alpine pastures and pastures. Problem: Fences cannot be erected, especially in the Alps and on the steep slopes of low mountain ranges.

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