Council Directive 79/409/EEC on the conservation of wild birds, Article 4:
Relates to the conservation of all species of naturally occurring birds.
Covers the protection, management and control of these species and lays down rules for
Subject to special conservation measures with regard to their habitat to ensure survival
Member states are obliged to classify the suitable territories for the conservation of
Measures must be taken for the regularly occurring migratory species as well.
They shall notify the Commission all the related information so that it can coordinate to
protect the species in the areas where the Directive applies.
Member States shall take appropriate steps to avoid pollution or deterioration of habitats
• Applicant- Commission of the European Communities (represented
by Ingolf Pernice, a member of the legal department)
• Defendant- Federal Republic of Germany (represented by Ernst
• Third party / Intervener- United Kingdom of Great Britain and
Northern Ireland (represented by S. J. Hay)
The application initially comprised two claims-
1. Dredging and filling operations in the Rysumer Nacken.
2. Second concerning dyke-building operations carried out in the Leybucht.
With regard to the first claim-
Rysumer Nacken is not designated as a special protection area
they will have to bear the costs relating to the point as put forward by the defendant
Regarding the second claim-
Dyke-building operations in the Leybucht disturb birds which enjoy special protection
under the Directive and damage.
Member states need to take positive states to avoid any deterioration or pollution of
Theirs coastal defence measures are only acceptable in case of a threat to human
The 1st Claim-
• the defendant argued the Commission had all the information regarding
legal status of Rysumer Nacken.
• The place is not under the special protection area and is not a new
• New line of the dyke in the Leybucht and the areas located on the
landward side of the dyke are excluded from the protected areas.
• The competent authorities took account of all bird conservation
requirements and balanced against the requirements of coastal
• new line of the dyke and the temporary disturbances constitute the
smallest possible interference
• Commission has not furnished any evidence for impair the protection of
• Commission failed to establish significant effect under the
Directive- The United Kindom
• Commission materials does not support the idea that the project in
Leibucht involve deterioration of habitat of the birds.
• Supports the evidence provided by the defendant that the works at
issue will significantly improve ecological conditions in the
• Member States must be able to take into account the interests of
persons living in or around a special protection area.
• Maps and information about the park were given by Germany in
• Rysumer Nacken has no defenses.
• The limits of the Leybucht have been established.
• A state may limit a protected area's size for reasons other than
• Aerial fortification and dike construction are justified if they do
not reduce the particular protection area
• The state sets the size.
• Fortification of coastal areas and daches Wattenmeer's avocet
population is stable. They haven't updated population figures.
• Application was dismissed.
• The Commission was ordered to pay the costs including
the costs of the intervener and those related to the
application for interim measures.