Wildlife Act 1976

Functions of Minister in relation to wildlife.


11.(1) It shall be a function of the Minister to secure the conservation of wildlife F26[and to promote the conservation of biological diversity].

(2) Without prejudice to the generality of subsection (1) of this section, the Minister may in particular do all or any of the following:

(a) give assistance or advice to any person on any matter affecting wildlife,

(b) where the Minister considers that the management, or supervision of the management by him or on his behalf, of any land in which he has not an interest, is desirable in the interests of wildlife, he may manage or cause to be managed, or supervise or cause to be supervised the management of the land upon such terms and subject to such conditions as may be agreed upon between him and a person having an interest in the land,

F27[(bb) encourage the management of features of the landscape which are of major importance for wild flora and fauna including birds, which include those features which by virtue of

(i) their linear and continuous structure, such as rivers or canals with their banks or the traditional systems of marking field boundaries, or

(ii) their function as stepping stones, such as ponds or small woods,

are essential for the migration, dispersal and genetic exchange of wild species, for the purposes of the Habitats Directive or the Birds Directive,

(bc) take the requisite measures to maintain the population of the species referred to in Article 1 of the Birds Directive at a level that corresponds in particular to ecological, scientific and cultural requirements, while taking account of economic and recreational requirements, or to adapt the population of these species to that level,

(bd) take the requisite measures to preserve, maintain or re-establish a sufficient diversity and area of habitats by the preservation, maintenance and re-establishment of biotopes and habitats for all of the species of birds referred to in Article 1 of the Birds Directive, in particular the following measures

(i) the creation of European Sites, or

(ii) the upkeep and management in accordance with the ecological needs of habitats inside and outside European Sites, or

(iii) the re-establishment of destroyed biotopes, and

(iv) the creation of biotopes.]

(c) enter into, and carry out, an agreement with another person to participate in a scheme, undertaking or project for the conservation of wildlife and for the purposes of such scheme, undertaking or project to perform any one or more of the functions assigned to him under this Act,

(d) make grants or loans to further projects or activities which have as their object the conservation of wildlife generally, a particular aspect of such conservation or the development and proper use of hunting amenities and resources,

(e) promote, either directly or indirectly, whether alone or in conjunction with other persons, schemes or projects for the better conservation and use of wildlife or for the prevention, reduction or removal of any damage, or source of damage, to wildlife.

(3) The Minister may, either directly or in association with or through the agency of another person—

(a) carry out or cause to be carried out research which he considers desirable for the performance of his functions under this Act,

(b) promote the knowledge and understanding of matters to which the functions assigned to him under this Act are related.

(4) Nothing in this section shall restrict, prejudice or affect the performance by the Minister for Agriculture and Fisheries of any function which could have been performed by him immediately before the commencement of this section.

F28[(5) In this section biological diversity means the variability among living organisms from all sources, including terrestrial, marine and other aquatic ecosystems, and the ecological complexes of which they are part and diversity includes diversity within species, between species and of ecosystems.]




Inserted (31.07.2001) by Wildlife Amendment Act 2000 (38/2000), s. 9(a), S.I. No. 371 of 2001.


Inserted (21.09.2011) by European Communities (Birds and Natural Habitats) Regulations 2011 (S.I. No. 477 of 2011), reg. 56(24), in effect as per reg. 1(3).


Inserted (31.07.2001) by Wildlife Amendment Act 2000 (38/2000), s. 9(b), S.I. No. 371 of 2001.