Blaming animals to allow them to be endlessly massacred: the scandal of official hunts. The hearing is on 5 May in Marseille

Blaming animals to allow them to be endlessly massacred: the scandal of official hunts. The hearing is on 5 May in Marseille


One Voice's emergency interim suspension hearing at the Marseille Administrative Tribunal on 5 January 2023 against an official deer hunt.

On 25 November, the Bouches-du-Rhône Prefect authorised an official hunt allowing the killing of deer (added onto the hunting season), by alluding to supposed ‘damage’ that they will cause to agricultural enterprises, without providing evidence! Another demonstration of a deliberate choice by prefects to disrespect the law to allow hunters to satisfy their thirst for killing animals. One Voice condemns this umpteenth misappropriation of the regulations and will speak up for the deer during the hearing of their emergency interim suspension proceeding on 5 January at the Marseille Administrative Tribunal.

Edit from 10 January 2023:

On 9 January, the Marseille Administrative Tribunal rejected the emergency interim proceeding that we had initiated. Without even responding to our argument, they ruled that the small number of deer that would be killed would not justify urgent proceedings… but we obviously maintain our request on its merits and will demand justice for the deer killed during this battle.

Official hunts: a gift from prefects to hunters

Anything goes when it comes to allowing hunters to practice their hobby. In France, hunting is supposed to be, but it is not sufficiently, regulated (we have incidentally been asking for years for independent policing and monitoring of hunting, just like more than 300,000 people). The hunting licence exam is a farce, accidents keep happening and, week after week, they cost the lives of people who simply want to benefit from nature.

Hunters do not hide it: they like killing. And they can count on their prefect friends to give them numerous gifts. Among them is one that the hunters particularly appreciate: the ‘official hunts’. The words are polite, the reality of it less so: it is no more or less than the mass killing of tens of thousands of animals each year, eternal victims of the cruelty of an influential and vocal minority.

And of course, the gift does not end there: these massacres authorised by prefects are scarcely managed. Hunters can kill animals day and night, in all places where they take refuge, to use the terms in certain decrees. In short, killing is not enough; they must kill more, everywhere, and all the time.

The law? Trivial when it comes to massacring animals

The only obligation imposed on the prefects by the law to authorise such hunts — and it is already very few! — is to justify them. But this seems like too much effort: no proof of damage, no figures, no data. The prefects undoubtedly hope that these decrees will not be noticed. “Not seen, not caught!”. But let’s not forget: behind this disrespect for the law, there are thousands of animals who will be hunted down and massacred for the sole pleasure of a small number.

Faced with these repeat offences by the State and hunters, those defending animals and nature are keeping watch: to remind prefects of the meagre obligations that the law imposes on them in terms of hunting, we have increased our pleas against the decrees authorising official hunts. In Moselle, it was a win by default: the Prefect revoked his decree two days after the hearing.

Call on the Bouches-du-Rhône Prefect with us!

Example of the statement that you can copy and paste onto your networks:

Ms @Prefet13, for deer and for @onevoiceanimal take a lesson from @Prefet57: revoke this decree!

Translated from the French by Joely Justice