• Got : 2100€ / Objective : 2100€

About the action

Presentation of the Association

1- History

40 years ago, a stray bullet from a hunter passed through the living room window of the two founders. Desiring peace and justice, the couple then decreed the creation of an association to put an end to the abuses of power by hunters and to actively defend nature. The ASPAS was created in 1980 under the name "Union of Victims of Hunting and Their Nuisances". It became "The Association for the Protection of Wild Animals" in 1981, and the creation of the association was declared at the prefecture in 1983. The ASPAS is a non-governmental organization (NGO), approved at the national level by Ministerial Order dated December 20, 1999, and renewed on January 14, 2019, published in the Official Journal on March 28, 2019. The association is also approved for nature protection under article L. 141-1 of the Environmental Code and has been recognized as a public utility since 2008. Following the relocation of its head office, it was regularly registered in the register of associations of the Strasbourg District Court on August 21, 2003, and has since been governed by the provisions of local association law of Haut-Rhin, Bas-Rhin, and Moselle (articles 21 to 79-III of the local civil code). As a non-profit association, it fights for the respect of wild life and chooses not to receive any public subsidies in order to maintain complete freedom of action. This political and financial independence is rather rare in the French associative landscape of nature protection. Its funding mainly comes from donations, bequests, and memberships.

2 - Vision/Mission, Strategy, Action Principles, Target Groups

Mission & Vision:

The mission of the association is to act for the protection of fauna and flora, the rehabilitation of wild animals, and the preservation of natural environments in general. In other words, ASPAS actively works to protect animal and plant species, as well as the habitats and ecosystems on which they depend. ASPAS defends the voiceless of wild fauna, species deemed insignificant, cumbersome, or persecuted by human activities. The association also advocates for the free evolution of nature. The more we return wild territories to nature where it can express itself fully and freely, the better we find our place, without excess.

Strategy & Action Principles:

ASPAS fights for the preservation of fauna, flora, and nature in general through the following strategic approaches:

Acting in court to defend the voiceless and enforce and evolve the rights of nature in respect of wild life and for a happy coexistence between living beings: administrative and penal procedures for the protection of the fox, wolf, badger, pests, against hunting abuses, against poaching and pollution, and assisting individuals in banning hunting on their land by making them "ASPAS refuges."

Creating protected areas (rewilding) to safeguard natural ecosystems in the long term, thus enabling the development of tomorrow's ancient forests: creation and expansion of Wild Life Reserves, development of Wild Life Havens, raising awareness among elected officials and local actors, protecting and informing about reserves, participating in national and international networks, scientific innovation, data collection, and production of documentation.

Raising awareness among all actors to drive a change in mentality towards the preservation of wild life and the fight against climate change: advocacy actions, addressing elected officials, awareness-raising actions (especially among the younger generation), citizen mobilization, targeted petitions, citizen actions for wildlife protection at the national level and through the network of ASPAS's 35 delegations

Target Groups: ASPAS members, environmental activists, media, politicians, hunters and poachers, farmers, as well as the general public.

Project Description

1 - Title

This project is titled "The Badger Festival".

2 - Project Summary

As part of the World Badger Day (WBD) initiated by ASPAS in 2022 to denounce the practice of underground hunting, our ASPAS delegation in Ille-et-Vilaine wishes to organize an event in our region named "The Badger Festival" (hereinafter abbreviated as BF) for this year 2023. The WBD was held in Paris last year, and we believe it is important to raise public awareness about the protection of the European Badger in areas where the species is present, in direct relation to the territory.

We are planning an event on Sunday, May 14th (a day before the WBD which is on May 15th, marking the start of the additional digging period) featuring conferences addressing legal aspects, non-lethal protection methods, as well as workshops and activities for children. A volunteer team is already formed and the location has been found.

We believe that if we wish to change the situation of badgers in France, citizen mobilization and particularly awareness is a key step, as protection is not feasible without prior knowledge.

3 - Start Date, Duration

This Badger Festival will be held throughout the day on Sunday, May 14, 2023, the day before World Badger Day on May 15.

4 - Project Location

This project will be organized in the town of Tinténiac (35190) at the Du Guesclin hall (interior and covered outdoor area; see website). The venue is accessible by car, approximately 30 minutes from Rennes (see map below).

5 - Context and Challenges

The European Badger (Meles meles) is a mammal widely distributed across our continent, but still largely unknown to the general public. Classified in France as a game species (except in the former department of Bas-Rhin), the badger is considered problematic by the hunting community for many reasons (bovine tuberculosis, agricultural damage, etc.), which, while not necessarily false, need to be put into perspective and compared with the beneficial contributions of our little bear of the countryside (see, for example, the file compiled by France Nature Environnement in 2008).

Indeed, due to its biology, ecology, and behavior, the badger plays a key role in its habitat, notably by altering the physico-chemical composition of forest soils, promoting the development of diverse vegetation, and creating space for numerous species of insects and wild mammals that inhabit its burrow. These contributions make the badger a crucial species for biodiversity as a whole, supporting the production of ecosystem services from which human societies benefit.

These benefits are never highlighted by the hunting community, which continues to want to hunt and trap the badger using methods that we believe can no longer be ethically acceptable. Underground hunting, in particular, is still a widespread practice in the national territory, of unbearable cruelty, and has been described as harmful both for badger populations and for the spread of bovine tuberculosis (see the report by ANSES). Finally, the state of the populations is regularly reported as being in good condition, without real supporting figures or obtained through protocolled or non-protocolled observations, and varying according to territories. In fact, no reliable estimate of the French badger populations exists.

The challenges are therefore multiple, the main ones being to change the public's perception of this species, show them the ecological importance of the Badger, and denounce the hunting practices that victimize the species.

Projected Schedule for the Day

Start at 9:30 am: Welcome Coffee

10 am: Opening of stands and exhibitions:
- ASPAS stand and Badger stand
- Instant Sauvage Exhibition and Wild Badger Exhibition
- Various creative workshops for young audiences

10 am: Opening speech: presentation of the day, ASPAS, its missions, and the Ille-et-Vilaine delegation

10:30-11:15 am: Performance by Compagnie Désembrayée

11:30 am-12:30 pm: Batucada Bloco-Loco

12:30-1:30 pm: Lunch break: organic, local, and convivial catering by "Au Fenouil" caterer

2-3:30 pm: Conference by Virginie Boyaval, badger ethologist

4-5 pm: Conference by Manon Delattre, ASPAS lawyer, on the legal battle against badger digging.

5:30/6 pm: End of the day

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