Predator compensation

10) In reindeer herding areas, compensation will be given in full for any damage caused by predators to reindeer owners, insofar as possible. Outside the reindeer herding area, the primary aim is to prevent any damage caused by large carnivores to the owners of domestic and pet animals. Attempts will be made to ensure the continuity of the compensation scheme for seal damage and of subsidies for seal-proof traps.

Responsible institutions: Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry, Ministry of the Environment

Schedule: 2013–2020

Status in 2018: Until 2016, the compensations for damages caused by predators listed in the Hunting Act have continued to be given almost in full through supplementary budgeting and by virtue of budget amendments. In 2016, the predator compensations for reindeer owners were cut by 4 per cent, as otherwise the limit of 10 M€ permitted by the European Commission would have been exceeded. The predator compensations for 2017 will be cut by about 25 per cent.

The Action Plan 2014-2020 of the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund (EMFF) includes the possibility to compensate commercial fishermen for the damages on fish catch caused by seals and cormorants, and this system replaces the compensation scheme for seal damage. The EMFF may also compensate for the purchase of seal-proof traps for a single fishing vessel once during the action plan period.

In the spring of 2018, the Ministry of the Environment launched a project to formulate the principles and practices of compensations for damages caused by species protected under the Nature Conservation Act, and to prepare their legislative policies. The underlying reason for the project is the increase in damages caused by protected birds during the 2010s. A preliminary report summarising the compensations for damages caused by species protected under the Nature Conservation Act was completed in 2017.

Further information: Laakso, T., Miettinen, E., Kosunen, N., Ratamäki, O. & Määttä, T. 2017. Developing the procedure concerning damages caused by species protected under the Nature Conservation Act (in Finnish with English summary) Reports of the Ministry of the Environment 24/2017. 98 p. https://julkaisut.valtioneuvosto.fi/handle/10024/160353