In France, you just can’t go to the jungle and hunt down the animals you like. There are strong measures in effect to avert animal poaching. In fact, if you don’t own a valid license, you can hunt in France. Also, even if you own a license, you will be allowed to hunt on a specific territory. So, in this article, we are going to explain about hunting in France and how you can get a license. Let’s move forward and read the article carefully.
The Hunting Seasons in France
The hunting seasons in France are managed at a regional level. It has been that way to support and balance the ecological demands of the area. Therefore, the opening and closing dates of the hunting seasons depend heavily on the animal species and the département. Typically, the hunting season starts in September and it remains open until the end of the February. However, the regional préfet determines the opening date.
What species can you hunt in France?
The authority has available around 15% of all the animal species for hunting purposes. This includes 64 species of birds and 24 species of mammals.
How can you obtain a hunting license in France?
If you wish to obtain a hunting license (permis de chasser), you have to pass a theoretical and a practical exam first. Both exams are organized by the National Hunting and Wildlife Agency (Office National de Chasse et de la Faune Sauvage or ONCFS). Anyone can take part in this exam all year round.
What’s more, taking preparation for these exams are not difficult as you have to enroll yourself into an obligatory course. You can’t participate in the practical exam if you don’t pass the theoretical exam. Also, you have to be at least 15 years of age and if you fail once, you will have to start over again.
What about the application procedures?
At first, you need to communicate with the Departmental Hunting Federation (Fédération Départementale des Chasseurs)., The authority from the federation will inform you about the probable dates of enrolling in the training sessions. You will also get dates for both theory and practical exams at least 15 days in advance. When you have finished training courses, the federation will send an application to the ONCFS. You have to submit the following documents for the application:
- Photocopy of ID including passport or identity card or driving license
- Complete registration fee
What about the exams?
If you are sitting for theory exam, you will have to answer 21 questions. These questions are based on the following themes:
- Wildlife knowledge: It includes the knowledge of hunting games, animal biology, and the way of life.
- Hunting knowledge: It includes diverse hunting techniques and use of hunting dogs and hunting jargons.
- Knowledge of hunting Laws: This knowledge includes all the rules and regulations related to hunting laws.
- Knowledge of Arms and munitions: This knowledge includes the sound know-how of using the arms and munitions.
If you wish to pass the exam, you need to give 16 correct answers out of 21 questions. Most importantly, out of the 16 correct questions, you must answer two correct questions related to security. The inspectors of the ONCFS will issue the certificate of passing. After that you can apply for the practical exam. You will have 18 months to prepare for the practical exam, which includes three parts:
- Simulation of hunting and shooting with blanks
- Target shooting test including black targets. These targets represent species, which you can hunt. The red targets features protected species or animals, which you can’t hunt in France.
- Shooting a moving target
The bottom line you have to humble and honest while taking the hunting exams. Any discrepancies or dangerous behavior will disqualify you from the exam. Thus, you will not be able to obtain the hunting license.