It's hard to believe. But Natural England announced 23rd April, they are revoking three general licences for controlling certain wild birds as of Thursday 25 April 2019.
These licences (GL 04/05/06) cover 16 species of birds including several members of the crow family, Canada goose, some gulls and pigeons.
The change follows a legal challenge to the way the licences have been issued, which could mean users who rely on them are not acting lawfully.
Natural England is working at pace to put in place over the next few weeks alternative measures to allow lawful control of these bird species to continue where necessary. In the meantime, once the licences have been revoked and until new licences are issued, anyone needing to control one of these 16 bird species where there is no reasonable non-lethal alternative will need to apply for an individual licence.
For more information please see their website: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/general-licences-for-bird-control-major-changes-to-licensing-requirements
We have an active topic on Pigeon Watch discussing it, where updates and comment will be posted, to keep up to speed on developments:
In the meantime please make sure you are aware of the implications of this, so that you can stay within the law when shooting. There is a link on the topic to complain to Natural England, which we encourage all PW members to do.