Rodent and wolf-protection is on the European agenda, and it could prove costly for France and Sweden. They risk the full weight of European law, the French for failing to protect the last 200 or so Great Alsace Hamsters from extinction, and the Swedes for declaring open season on the wolf.
Both countries could face fines if a European Court of Justice opinion finding them failing in their duties is formalised by judges.
Brussels has been warning Paris about this since 2007. It has also asked Stockholm to ban wolf-hunting again, after it lifted the ban last year, ignoring EU protests that this violates environmental laws. Sweden will let licenced hunters shoot 20 each between now and mid-February.
Angering animal rights groups, the largest country in northern Europe says the cull is to keep the wolf population below 210.