HOW TO GET AN OTTER LICENCE

Prerequisites for fishery owner/manager:

• Ensure the fishery is appropriately fenced to the approved standar (see WML (Wildlife Management Licence) – CL36 Annex C)

• Ensure evidence is available to confirm the fishery contains value stock that would result in financial loss if predated upon by otters

• Ensure landowner’s permission has been obtained for any trapping-associated nactivity

• Apply to Natural England (NE) for the necessary training and subsequent approval/registration under Class Licence WML – CL36 Otters: Live Capture and Transport 

OR

for contact details of one of the current registered persons (under WML – CL36).

Contact details for Natural England

For licensing enquiries: 

Telephone: 0208 026 1089 

Email: wildlife@naturalengland.org.uk 

Postal address: Technical Services, Wildlife Licensing, Natural England, First Floor, Temple Quay House, 2 The Square, Bristol BS1 6DG.

For other enquiries use the Enquiry Service: 

Telephone: 0300 060 3900 

Email:  enquiries@naturalengland.org.uk 

Web: https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/natural-england#org-contacts 

STEP-BY-STEP OTTER TRAPPING/RELEASE PROCESS FOR REGISTERED PERSONS UNDER CLASS LICENCE WML – CL36

1. Ensure other legal and practical means of removing of otters from the fishery have been considered, and have either failed or proved to be impractical prior to notification of intent to trap.

2. Notify NE by email using form found at WML – CL36 Annex D, at least 5 days prior to any action taking place, and forward to the email address of the appropriate NE Area Team (see WML – CL36 Annex B).

3. Confirm appropriate landowner permissions have been obtained.

4. Inspect the fishery fencing prior to any trapping action. Ensure identification and rectification of any damage/breaches. 

5. Ensure traps are of the approved standard (see WML – CL36 Information and Advice).

6. Ensure all traps are set at locations above normal flood plain and in accordance to the licence conditions and recommendations.

7. Once set, ensure traps are inspected at least twice in any 24hr period in accordance to the licence conditions and recommendations. [Note: Traps may be visually checked by an unregistered person who may report the outcome to the registered trapper. It is only the registered trapper who may set or handle the trap and any animal caught within it]. 

8. Any trapped otter to be released at the earliest opportunity, outside the fishery fencing, near the fishery and close to a body of water. 

9. Once trapping activity has completed, a ‘Report of action taken under licence’ (report form WML-LR-CL36) needs to be completed and sent to NE within 14 days. 

 

Mark Walsingham

Tyler Lowe-Fowler