In a statement, the BE political party said that it has questioned the Minister for Environment and Climate Action in the Assembly of the Republic, wanting to know if necropsies were carried out on the corpses of the animals found in Montalegre and Bragança and what the conclusions were.
The Institute for Nature Conservation and Forests (ICNF) reported on 17 February the discovery of two Iberian wolf corpses in Xertelo, municipality of Montalegre, and Rio de Onor, Bragança.
Both situations are being investigated by teams from the Nature and Environment Protection Service (SEPNA) of the GNR and nature watchdogs.
The Iberian wolf is a protected species and has been considered to be a species “in danger” in Portugal since 1990.
In the case of Montalegre, the corpse of a horse was also found near the wolf.
Regarding this situation, ICNF specified that the “nature watchers found several snare traps, used in illegal hunting, and that the GNR is collecting the evidence of this illegal practice - there is not, so far, enough evidence to conclude the existence of another dead animal”, as it was reported in some media.
On behalf of the BE, Nelson Peralta, Maria Manuel Rola and José Maria Cardoso want to know if the snares found in Montalegre were subject to analysis, what the result of that analysis was, and if it was possible to identify who was responsible for setting the traps and the killing.
Howling For Conservation - The Iberian Wolf (o lobo ibérico) | Inspire Wilderness
The Government was also asked by MEPs how many Iberian wolves were found dead by the authorities in the last five years, what the causes of death were and in which municipalities the slaughtered animals were found.
The BE asked the Government if it will take “measures to dissuade poaching and prevent the setting of traps in the Peneda-Gerês National Park, Montesinho Natural Park and other sensitive areas in the national territory” and, if so, what measures have been taken.
Finally, the Bloco wants to know how many nature wardens are deployed in the parks of Gerês and Montesinho, and whether the Government considers this number “sufficient to monitor the entire extent of those protected areas”.
The Iberian wolf is an endemic subspecies of the Iberian Peninsula that has an unfavourable conservation status.
In the Red Book of Vertebrates of Portugal the subspecies is classified as “in danger” of extinction.
The wolf is currently confined to only 20 percent of its original area, being found mainly north of the Douro River. The last population estimates indicated the existence of only 220 to 430 animals in national territory.