The Partnership for Action Against Wildlife Crime NI (PAW NI) brings together statutory agencies, non-statutory agencies and interested parties with the common goal of combating wildlife crime through publicity, education and campaigning.  PAW NI partners include key government Departments, PSNI and other enforcement agencies, environmental organisations, animal welfare groups and country sports associations.

PAW NI takes a lead in considering strategic issues concerned with combating wildlife where members link with the PSNI Wildlife Liaison Officer and other key enforcement agencies. PAWNI provides a forum to facilitate the exchange of information, expertise on wildlife knowledge, prevention and enforcement between all the members involved. PAWNI works to increase public awareness of key issues associated with combating wildlife crime and raising the profile of wildlife crime within the judiciary & statutory agencies. Nationally the group promotes and encourages the use of, and research into, forensic technologies.

The PAWNI group is formed of a main steering group where each member organisation is represented and which meets 4-6 times per year. The main group is then comprised of various sub-groups which examine and action various components of the remit according to their various specialities and expertise.

Badger Sub-Group – which deals with crimes relating to badgers

Fin Sub-Group – which deals with issues relating to fish poaching and marine crimes

Fur & Feather Sub-Group – which deal with issues relating to wild mammals including deer poaching, game-bird poaching and general poaching

Nesting Birds & Bats Sub-Group – which deal with issues relating to disturbance and destruction of breeding bird nests and associated crimes

Publicity Sub-Group – which deals with publicity and raising awareness of wildlife crime & PAWNI

Raptor Sub-Group – which deals with issues relating to birds of prey and raptor crimes


More information on the PAW NI initiative can be found at the following link with wider information on PAW UK available nationally at the following link

The organisations which are involved and support the PAW NI initiative include:

  • Agri-Food and Biosciences Institute (AFBI)
  • Belfast Zoo
  • Born Free
  • British Association for Shooting & Conservation (BASC)
  • British Deer Society (BDS)
  • Countryside Alliance Ireland (CAI)
  • Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA)
  • Food Standards Agency (FSA)
  • Forest Service (FS)
  • Health & Safety Executive NI (HSE)
  • Lecale Conservation
  • Loughs Agency
  • National Trust (NT)
  • Northern Ireland Badger Group
  • Northern Ireland Bat Group
  • Northern Ireland Deer Society
  • Northern Ireland Environment Agency (NIEA)
  • Northern Ireland Raptor Study Group (NIRSG)
  • Police Service Northern Ireland (PSNI)
  • RSPB Northern Ireland
  • Scottish Association for Country Sports (SACS)
  • UK National Wildlife Crime Unit (NWCU)
  • Ulster Angling Federation (UAF)
  • Ulster Farmers Union (UFU)
  • Ulster Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (USPCA)
  • Ulster Wildlife (UW)

During 2017 – 2018 the Northern Ireland Environment Agency (NIEA) submitted a funding bid to the Department of Justice Assets Recovery Community Scheme (ARCS) Fund. This fund is designed to support initiatives for the benefit of victims, communities and the environment during 2017/2018 and implement projects that help to build a fair, just and safer community in Northern Ireland and are projects that are designed to prevent crime or reduce the fear of crime. More information on asset recovery can be found at the following government link: www.gov.uk/guidance/asset-recovery-powers-for-prosecutors-guidance-and-background-note-2009

This project has three key strands which are described in the additional specific project pages of this website (i) promotion and awareness of wildlife crime and PAW NI (ii) deployment of wildlife monitoring cameras for the purposes of protecting vulnerable raptor species (iii) deployment of remote tracking devices on raptors to monitoring movements and raise awareness of the occurrence of these birds and their vulnerability to crime.

This project is known as “Hawk-Eyes” and portrays the fact that this project is specifically designed to raise awareness amongst communities in Northern Ireland so that people are the eyes in the community to detect and report crime and also that these remote and specialised technology are being deployed to make wildlife criminals aware that they never know any more when or where they are being watched…..

This project would encourage people across Northern Ireland to be vigilant and if you see or know of any wildlife crime we would urge you to report it!

For more information on reporting wildlife crime see the Report it Now link on www.wildlifecrimeni.org/

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