Hunting and Game Management

Hunting is one of mankind's oldest expressions of culture. Some 260 000 people in Sweden have hunting as a leisure time interest or as part of their livelihood. Hunting is regulated in the Hunting Act (1987:253), the Hunting Ordinance (1987:905) and in the Swedish Environmental Protection Agency's Hunting Regulations.

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The hunting season

All wild mammals and birds are, in principle, protected. The Hunting Regulations determine which animals can be hunted and when this can be done. Some twenty species of mammals and forty or so species of birds can be hunted during the periods specified in the Regulations. In general, an unlimited number of individual animals can be taken during the general hunting season, but at times, as is the case with moose, the county administrative board determines how many animals may be taken. From an economic point of view, moose is the most valuable game animal that can be hunted. Each year, over 90 000 animals are taken.

If a game species causes damage, the county administrative board or the Swedish Environmental Protection Agency can also authorise hunting at other times to prevent or limit damage by game animals to farmers and others.

The hunting permit

Everyone who engages in hunting must pay an annual game management fee of SEK 300 by obtaining a hunting permit. The money is used for purposes such as game management and providing information on hunting issues.

Shared responsibility

The Swedish Environmental Protection Agency is the central government agency for hunting and game management issues, while county administrative boards are responsible for these issues at regional level. The two hunting organisations, the Swedish Association for Hunting and Wildlife Management and Jägarnas Riksförbund (a national hunting association), help by spreading news and information on hunting and game management issues.