Search Legislation

Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981

What Version

 Help about what version

Advanced Features

 Help about advanced features

Status:

There are multiple versions of this provision on screen. These apply to different geographical extents. Help about Status

Close

Status

The term provision is used to describe a definable element in a piece of legislation that has legislative effect – such as a Part, Chapter or section.

Sometimes the text of a provision is changed, but the change(s) only apply to a particular geographical area. In some limited cases where this happens, the editorial team create a version for each different geographical area. Multiple versions are only created in this way where the change in question is a substitution so that there are different versions of the text for the different extents. Insertions and repeals of text do not give rise to such multiple versions.

Changes to legislation:

Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981, Section 2 is up to date with all changes known to be in force on or before 25 November 2017. There are changes that may be brought into force at a future date. Changes that have been made appear in the content and are referenced with annotations. Help about Changes to Legislation

Close

Changes to Legislation

Revised legislation carried on this site may not be fully up to date. Changes and effects are recorded by our editorial team in lists which can be found in the ‘Changes to Legislation’ area. Where those effects have yet to be applied to the text of the legislation by the editorial team they are also listed alongside the legislation in the affected provisions. Use the ‘more’ link to open the changes and effects relevant to the provision you are viewing.

Changes and effects yet to be applied to :

 Help about changes and effects
Close

Changes and effects

This section lists the changes and effects yet to be applied to the specific provision you are viewing.

  • s. 2(6) functions made exercisable concurrently or jointly with the Welsh Ministers by 2006 c. 32 Sch. 3A para. 1 (as inserted) by 2017 c. 4 Sch. 4 para. 1

Changes and effects yet to be applied to the whole Act associated Parts and Chapters:

 Help about changes and effects
Close

Changes and effects

This section lists the changes and effects yet to be applied to the whole Act, associated Parts and Chapters where applicable. This includes any insertions of whole new Parts, Chapters or provisions yet to be inserted into this Act. These effects are included in this view as they may be (but won’t necessarily be) relevant to the specific provision that you are viewing.

Whole provisions yet to be inserted into this Act (including any effects on those provisions):

2 Exceptions to s. 1.E+W

(1)Subject to the provisions of this section, a person shall not be guilty of an offence under section 1 by reason of the killing or taking of a bird included in Part I of Schedule 2 outside the close season for that bird, or the injuring of such a bird outside that season in the course of an attempt to kill it.

(2)Subject to the provisions of this section, an authorised person shall not be guilty of an offence under section 1 by reason of—

(a)the killing or taking of a bird included in Part II of Schedule 2, or the injuring of such a bird in the course of an attempt to kill it;

(b)the taking, damaging or destruction of a nest of such a bird; or

(c)the taking or destruction of an egg of such a bird.

(3)Subsections (1) and (2) shall not apply in Scotland on Sundays or on Christmas Day; and subsection (1) shall not apply on Sundays in any area of England and Wales which the Secretary of State may by order prescribe for the purposes of that subsection.

(4)In this section and section 1 “close season” means—

(a)in the case of capercaillie and (except in Scotland) woodcock, the period in any year commencing with 1st February and ending with 30th September;

(b)in the case of snipe, the period in any year commencing with 1st February and ending with 11th August;

(c)in the case of wild duck and wild geese in or over any area below high-water mark of ordinary spring tides, the period in any year commencing with 21st February and ending with 31st August;

(d)in any other case, subject to the provisions of this Part, the period in any year commencing with 1st February and ending with 31st August.

(5)The Secretary of State may by order made with respect to the whole or any specified part of Great Britain vary the close season for any wild bird specified in the order.

(6)If it appears to the Secretary of State expedient that any wild birds included in Part II of Schedule 1 or Part I of Schedule 2 should be protected during any period outside the close season for those birds, he may by order made with respect to the whole or any specified part of Great Britain declare any period (which shall not in the case of any order exceed fourteen days) as a period of special protection for those birds; and this section and section 1 shall have effect as if any period of special protection declared under this subsection for any birds formed part of the close season for those birds.

(7)Before making an order under subsection (6) the Secretary of State shall consult a person appearing to him to be a representative of persons interested in the shooting of birds of the kind proposed to be protected by the order.

Annotations: Help about Annotation
Close

Annotations are used to give authority for changes and other effects on the legislation you are viewing and to convey editorial information. They appear at the foot of the relevant provision or under the associated heading. Annotations are categorised by annotation type, such as F-notes for textual amendments and I-notes for commencement information (a full list can be found in the Editorial Practice Guide). Each annotation is identified by a sequential reference number. For F-notes, M-notes and X-notes, the number also appears in bold superscript at the relevant location in the text. All annotations contain links to the affecting legislation.

Extent Information

E1This version of this provision extends to England and Wales only; a separate version has been created for Scotland only.

Modifications etc. (not altering text)

C1S.2(6): Functions transferred (W.) (1.7.1999) by S.I. 1999/672, art. 2, Sch. 1

2 Exceptions to s. 1[F2: acts by certain persons outside close season].S

(1)Subject to the provisions of this section [F3where subsection (1A) applies], a person shall not be guilty of an offence under section 1 by reason of the killing or taking of a bird included in Part I of Schedule 2 outside the close season for that bird, or the injuring of such a bird outside that season in the course of an attempt to kill it.

[F4(1A)This subsection applies where—

(a)the person who kills or injures had—

(i)a legal right to kill such a bird; or

(ii)permission, from a person who had a right to give permission, to kill such a bird; or

(b)the person who takes had—

(i)a legal right to take such a bird; or

(ii)permission, from a person who had a right to give permission, to take such a bird.]

(2)F5. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

(3)[F6Subsection (1)] shall not apply in Scotland on Sundays or on Christmas Day [F7in relation to those birds included in Part I of Schedule 2 which are also included in Part IA of that Schedule]; and subsection (1) shall not apply on Sundays in any area of England and Wales which the Secretary of State may by order prescribe for the purposes of that subsection.

[F8(3A)Subject to the provisions of this section, where subsection (3B) applies a person does not commit an offence under section 1 by reason of the taking for the purposes of breeding of—

(a)a partridge or pheasant included in Part I of Schedule 2; or

(b)an egg of such a bird.

(3B)This subsection applies where—

(a)the person who takes does so during the period of 28 days commencing with the first day of the close season for the bird; and

(b)the person who takes had—

(i)a legal right to take such a bird; or

(ii)permission, from a person who had a right to give permission, to take such a bird.

(3C)A person does not commit an offence under section 1 by reason of the taking of a red grouse if—

(a)the grouse is taken—

(i)for the purpose of preventing the spread of disease; and

(ii)with the intention of releasing it from captivity after no more than 12 hours; and

(b)the person had—

(i)a legal right to take such a grouse; or

(ii)permission, from a person who had a right to give permission, to take such a grouse.]

(4)In [F9section 1, this section and section 6]close season” means—

(a)in the case of [F10capercaillie and] (except in Scotland) woodcock, the period in any year commencing with 1st February and ending with 30th September;

(b)in the case of snipe, the period in any year commencing with 1st February and ending with 11th August;

[F11(ba)in the case of pheasant, the period in any year commencing with 2nd February and ending with 30th September;

(bb)in the case of partridge, the period in any year commencing with 2nd February and ending with 31st August;]

(c)in the case of wild duck and wild geese in or over any area below high-water mark of ordinary spring tides, the period in any year commencing with 21st February and ending with 31st August;

[F12(ca)in the case of black grouse, the period commencing with 11th December in any year and ending with 19th August in the following year;

(cb)in the case of ptarmigan and red grouse, the period commencing with 11th December in any year and ending with 11th August in the following year;]

(d)in any other case, subject to the provisions of this Part, the period in any year commencing with 1st February and ending with 31st August.

(5)The Secretary of State may by order made with respect to the whole or any specified part of Great Britain vary the close season for any wild bird specified in the order.

(6)If it appears to the Secretary of State expedient that any wild birds included in Part II of Schedule 1 or Part I of Schedule 2 should be protected during any period outside the close season for those birds, he may by order made with respect to the whole or any specified part of Great Britain declare any period (which shall not in the case of any order exceed fourteen days) as a period of special protection for those birds; and [F13section 1, this section and section 6] shall have effect as if any period of special protection declared under this subsection for any birds formed part of the close season for those birds.

(7)Before making an order under subsection (6) the Secretary of State shall consult [F14such persons] appearing to him to be a representative of persons interested in the shooting of birds of the kind proposed to be protected by the order [F15as he considers appropriate].

Annotations: Help about Annotation
Close

Annotations are used to give authority for changes and other effects on the legislation you are viewing and to convey editorial information. They appear at the foot of the relevant provision or under the associated heading. Annotations are categorised by annotation type, such as F-notes for textual amendments and I-notes for commencement information (a full list can be found in the Editorial Practice Guide). Each annotation is identified by a sequential reference number. For F-notes, M-notes and X-notes, the number also appears in bold superscript at the relevant location in the text. All annotations contain links to the affecting legislation.

Extent Information

E2This version of this provision extends to Scotland only; a separate version has been created for England and Wales only

Amendments (Textual)

F10Words in s. 2(4)(a) omitted (S.) (4.11.2001) by virtue of S.S.I. 2001/337, reg. 2(2)

Back to top

Options/Help

Print Options

You have chosen to open The Whole Act

The Whole Act you have selected contains over 200 provisions and might take some time to download. You may also experience some issues with your browser, such as an alert box that a script is taking a long time to run.

Would you like to continue?

You have chosen to open The Whole Act as a PDF

The Whole Act you have selected contains over 200 provisions and might take some time to download.

Would you like to continue?

You have chosen to open the Whole Act

The Whole Act you have selected contains over 200 provisions and might take some time to download. You may also experience some issues with your browser, such as an alert box that a script is taking a long time to run.

Would you like to continue?

Close

Legislation is available in different versions:

Latest Available (revised):The latest available updated version of the legislation incorporating changes made by subsequent legislation and applied by our editorial team. Changes we have not yet applied to the text, can be found in the ‘Changes to Legislation’ area.

Original (As Enacted or Made):The original version of the legislation as it stood when it was enacted or made. No changes have been applied to the text.

Close

See additional information alongside the content

Geographical Extent: Indicates the geographical area that this provision applies to. For further information see ‘Frequently Asked Questions’.

Show Timeline of Changes: See how this legislation has or could change over time. Turning this feature on will show extra navigation options to go to these specific points in time. Return to the latest available version by using the controls above in the What Version box.

Close

Opening Options

Different options to open legislation in order to view more content on screen at once

Close

More Resources

Access essential accompanying documents and information for this legislation item from this tab. Dependent on the legislation item being viewed this may include:

  • the original print PDF of the as enacted version that was used for the print copy
  • lists of changes made by and/or affecting this legislation item
  • confers power and blanket amendment details
  • all formats of all associated documents
  • correction slips
  • links to related legislation and further information resources
Close

More Resources

Use this menu to access essential accompanying documents and information for this legislation item. Dependent on the legislation item being viewed this may include:

  • the original print PDF of the as enacted version that was used for the print copy
  • correction slips

Click 'View More' or select 'More Resources' tab for additional information including:

  • lists of changes made by and/or affecting this legislation item
  • confers power and blanket amendment details
  • all formats of all associated documents
  • links to related legislation and further information resources