Danish deer park generates controversy

Oslo skylineAfter lengthy squabbles with local officials, the daughter of Denmark’s wealthiest man was granted permission to open the nation’s largest public hunting ground. Lego heiress Sofie Kirk Kristiansen will create a 1,400-hectare public forest in the middle of Jutland where hunters will be welcome to stalk their prey. But many groups are still voicing their anger over the decision.
The park will be known as Klelund. With an 18-kilometre fence surrounding the park, it will become Denmark’s largest enclosed forest. Kristiansen hailed the council’s decision as a “dream come true.” But the Copenhagen Post reports that many conservation groups, as well as local residents, are very disappointed.

The Danish Society for Nature Conservation was one of the leading groups fighting the creation of the massive public park. Even the Danish Hunters’ Association was against the Klelund plan, saying the fence would restrict the deer population from spreading naturally and make them easy targets for hunters.

Local resident Finn Hahn told the JydskeVestkysten newspaper “I’m speechless. It will probably be like everyone says, in 30 years Denmark won’t have any open nature areas.”

The worry for the conservationists now, is that other landowners around Denmark may think about doing the same kind of thing. Nora Skjernaa Hansen, attorney for the society, hopes the government’s Forest and Nature Board will consider creating restrictions on fencing in open areas in the future. But the Klelund decision has opened the door to fencing Denmark in.

From the Copenhagen Post

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