Sleeve. Opening of the hunt: this new ban worries hunters

Daniel Piel, gunsmith in Montebourg (Manche), is worried about the end of lead ammunition. (©Sébastien LUCOT)

As the opening of the hunt is fast approaching in the English Channel, a new ban hangs over hunters: llead ammunition ban in mid-February 2023.

44,000 tons

According to the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA), 44,000 tonnes of lead are dispersed in nature within the European Union. 57% from sport shooting, 32% from hunting and 11% from fishing activities.

Indeed, the European Commission published in January 2021 a regulation prohibiting the use of lead shot in wet areas or within 100 meters of these. Ponds, ponds, rivers… All permanent or temporary water areas “In other words, almost the entire department”deplores Daniel Piel, owner of theTricathlon armory in Montebourg.

replace lead

This measure does not surprise the hunting community. In 2005, another circular had already been created on this subject. But this time, the regulations would be more restrictive. “ Hunting with lead cartridges could be banned throughout the department. There are many water points. »

To replace these buckshot, hunters can use shot made of steel.

“This material is much less efficient and it’s a disaster. Less dense, steel passes through the animal, while lead deforms on impact and causes more damage.

Daniel PielOwner of the Tricathlon armory in Montebourg

By this explanation, he fears the multiplication of injured animalsrather than killed, the lethality of steel being less important.

“We have already noticed this for waterfowl where lead is already prohibited. We often see affected ducks that manage to fly away. »

Daniel PielOwner of the Tricathlon armory in Montebourg.

harmful to the environment, lead can poison animals wild, such as birds. “We have often been told about lead poisoning,” concedes the gunsmith.

The toxicity of lead, the inefficiency of steel… So tungsten made its appearance. Problem for hunters, the box of 10 cartridges costs more than 50 euros, against 7 to 10 euros for lead and steel.

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The fear of getting hurt

Moreover, the old rifles, to which hunters are often attached, cannot function, “or so at low pressure and it is also ineffective”, with steel ammunition. The change of weapons is essential, an additional investment for them. “You have to count between 500 euros for the entry level and 1,000 euros for a brand gun. »

From this observation, Willy Schraen, president of the National Federation of Hunters (FNC), asked the State, in the columns of Le Parisien in early September, to help hunters renew their weapons.

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