To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment (1) when he intends making a final decision on the granting of full protection under section 9(1) of the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 to further wildlife species;(2) which animals, recommended by the Nature Conservancy Council for further protection, partial protection or full protection under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 quinquennial review, were not so included in his recent announcement of changes to the Act's protected lists;(3) if he will give reasons for the exclusion of each of those species recommended by the Nature Conservancy Council for further, partial or full protection under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 quinquennial review which were not so included in his recent announcement of changes to the Act's protected list.
Further to the announcement by my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State on Tuesday 1 December of wider protection for a total of 79 species of animals and plants under the terms of the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981, he is currently giving further careful consideration to the conservation case for those species recommended for protection by the NCC and not referred to in his announcement. The species concerned are the adder (vipera berus), allis shad (alosa alosa), basking shark (cetorhirius maximus), freshwater pearl mussel (margaritefera margaritefera) and 22 species of British butterflies (rhopalocera). A final announcement on these will be made in due course, when further evidence on these species has been secured and evaluated.