Parliamentary questions
5 November 2015
O-000138/2015
Question for oral answer
to the Commission
Rule 128
Karin Kadenbach, Lidia Senra Rodríguez, Lola Sánchez Caldentey, Luke Ming Flanagan, Miguel Urbán Crespo, Estefanía Torres Martínez, Kostas Chrysogonos, Marisa Matias, Josu Juaristi Abaunz, Kateřina Konečná, Anja Hazekamp, Takis Hadjigeorgiou, Neoklis Sylikiotis, Ángela Vallina, Indrek Tarand, Klaus Buchner, Stelios Kouloglou, Stefan Eck, Nicola Caputo, Miriam Dalli, Fredrick Federley, Susanne Melior, Tibor Szanyi, Karoline Graswander-Hainz, Jacqueline Foster, Josef Weidenholzer, Keith Taylor, Eugen Freund, Evelyn Regner, Rikke Karlsson, Filiz Hyusmenova, Dominique Bilde, Zbigniew Kuźmiuk, Petras Auštrevičius, Isabella De Monte, Sirpa Pietikäinen, Pavel Poc, Maria Noichl, Dario Tamburrano, Viorica Dăncilă

 Subject: EU ban on the use of wild animals in circuses

Health controls relating to the movement of circus animals should be applied through Commission Regulation (EC) 1739/2005 laying down animal health requirements for the movement of circus animals between Member States.

In the EU, the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) is implemented through a set of regulations known as the Wildlife Trade Regulations, including Council Regulation (EC) No 338/97, which go beyond the provisions of CITES in some respects.

However, studies demonstrate that health checks and controls on trade in and possession of wild animals are difficult to exercise, as circuses are not only on the move much of the time, but also often change their names and the acts they employ.

In addition, the use of wild animals in circuses regularly leads to accidents involving animal tamers, circus employees and the public.

The past few years have seen increasing concerns over the ethics and safety of using wild animals in circuses, and this has led to changes in legislation in a number of EU Member States: indeed, 16 have already adopted a total or partial ban on their use.

Will the Commission prepare a proposal for an EU-wide ban on wild animals in circuses, so as to ensure a harmonised approach among Member States on exposure to risks to public health and security and on the illegal trade in wild animals?

Last updated: 11 November 2015Legal notice