Apply for this licence

Start now on the Northern Ireland Environment Agency (NIEA) website


You need a wildlife licence if you want to shoot cormorants for the purpose of preventing serious damage to your inland fishery in Northern Ireland.

How to apply

Apply online on the Northern Ireland Environment Agency (NIEA) website.

NIEA will only issue a licence if:

  • you own or operate an inland fishery
  • your fishery is large enough to make it impossible to bar access to cormorants in other ways eg fencing, netting or tank covers

If you want more than 1 person to be licensed to shoot cormorants, you must include their names on the application form.

You must also provide details of any convictions for wildlife offences for everyone listed on your application form.

Fees and charges

There’s no charge for this licence.


Licences will not be issued for May, June and July (the cormorant breeding season) and no more than 2 licences a year will be issued to the same fishery.

Licences are valid for up to 30 days after stocking.

You must comply with any conditions attached to your licence.

Fines and penalties

If you fail to comply with licence conditions you may be fined and have your licence revoked.

You can be fined up to £5,000 and imprisoned for up to 6 months if you shoot cormorants (or any other birds) without a licence.