The Convention on the Conservation of European Wildlife and Natural Habitats

The Convention on the Conservation of European Wildlife and Natural Habitats (the Bern Convention) was adopted in Bern, Switzerland in 1979, and came into force in 1982. The principal aims of the Convention are to ensure conservation and protection of  wild plant and animal species and their natural habitats (listed in Appendices I and II of the Convention), to increase cooperation between contracting parties, and to regulate the exploitation of those species (including migratory species) listed in Appendix III. To this end the Convention imposes legal obligations on contracting parties, protecting over 500 wild plant species and more than 1,000 wild animal species.
The UK government ratified the Bern Convention in 1982. The obligations of the Convention is transposed into national law by means of  the Wildlife and Countryside Act (1981 as amended),Nature Conservation (Scotland) Act 2004 (as amended), Wildlife (Northern Ireland) Order 1985, and the Nature Conservation and Amenity Lands (Northern Ireland) Order 1985.
As a signatory, the European Union meets its obligations under the Convention by means of the Directive 2009/147/EC on the conservation of wild birds (the Birds Directive) (the codified version of Council Directive 79/409/EEC as amended) and the Council Directive 92/43/EEC on the conservation of natural habitats and of wild fauna and flora (the Habitats Directive).
JNCC provides scientific and technical advice to the Government on the interpretation, application and implementation of the Convention.
May 2017

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