Statutory guidance

Wild birds: licence to kill or take for public health or safety (GL41)

As a land owner, occupier or authorised person, use this general licence to kill or take certain wild birds to preserve public health or safety.



From 1 January 2021, you must follow the conditions of general licence GL41 to control certain target birds for the purposes of preserving public health or public safety.

The main changes to the licence conditions are:

  1. Species that can be controlled under licence are listed by 3 health and safety purposes of: slips and falls; spread of human disease; birds nesting.
  2. Magpie, carrion crow and rook are removed from the licence.
  3. Licence users must comply with the standard licence conditions for trapping wild birds and using decoy birds in traps (WML-GL33).
  4. You may use the licence on or near a protected site as long as you have any necessary consent from Natural England to do so and comply with any site-specific conditions on the licence.

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Published 1 January 2021