Quantcast
May 062012
 

Bee-Eater with Shotgun Injury – Photo by Cally Higginbottom

Over 730 illegal hunting incidents were recorded by BirdLife Malta’s Spring Watch teams during the spring hunting derogation period between the 12th April and 30th April, BirdLife Malta announced today. This figure is based on an initial analysis of the data gathered by BirdLife Malta’s Spring Watch teams and does not include illegalities recorded by the Committee Against Bird Slaughter.

The illegalities recorded by BirdLife include hunters targeting protected species, exceeding the season’s legal daily bag limit, hunting outside permitted hours, and hunting without wearing the yellow armbands, a legal requirement of the derogation.

In addition, the conservation organisation received 14 shot protected birds since the opening of the spring hunting season (1). This compares with nine shot protected birds received during the same period in 2008 and 2009 together, when spring hunting was not permitted.

BirdLife teams also witnessed over 50 instances of hunters shooting at protected birds, and observed more than 40 protected birds in flight with injuries consistent with shotgun fire.

“These figures are just a small indicator of the killing of protected species during their spring migration over Malta. We do not know how many shot protected birds were received by the police, the veterinary services, the National Museum of Natural History and other organisations,” BirdLife Malta conservation and policy officer, Nicholas Barbara said.

“What we do know is that when a spring hunting season is opened, thousands of protected birds migrating to their breeding grounds in Europe are in peril over Malta. The government’s denial of the scale of illegal hunting is only encouraging the poachers who year after year continue with their carnage with almost no scrutiny.” Barbara claimed.

BirdLife also revealed that the ‘strict supervision’ condition for this year’s derogation was clearly not met due to the very limited police presence compared to over 6,000 licensed hunters.

While the government announced that 50 police officers would control the activities of thousands of hunters, in actual fact BirdLife recorded on average only four police vehicles on patrol at any given time. The 50 police officers officially quoted as enforcing the spring hunting derogation appear to have been working in shifts and sharing a handful of cars.

“Despite the best intentions of the under-resourced ALE Unit, a derogation permitting thousands of hunters has not been strictly supervised. This year’s spring hunting derogation is yet another example of Malta deceiving the European Commission by exploiting the derogation loophole in the Birds Directive.”

A detailed analysis of the data gathered by BirdLife Malta during the spring hunting derogation period will be prepared and submitted to the European Commission in the coming weeks.

This article was written and published by BirdLife Malta.


Leave a Comment

  One Response to “Spring Hunting Atrocities Continue in Malta”

  1. I have been to many Mediterranean islands, and loved them all, but have always avoided Malta as a protest against this barbaric slaughter. I will be happy to visit and support their tourist industry once it is stopped. The EU should take a very hard line with them and fine them mercilessly until then!

 Leave a Reply

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>



Top-Viewed Posts Last 30 Days

  1. POLL: Should wildlife hunting contests be permitted in Idaho? » [5871 Views]
  2. POLL: Should the ban on South Africa’s horn trade be lifted? » [3457 Views]
  3. POLL: Should whaling by Iceland and Norway be banned? » [2839 Views]
  4. POLL: Should New Zealand fur seals be culled in South Australia? » [1345 Views]
  5. POLL: Should the export of baby elephants to China be stopped? » [1136 Views]
  6. The most beautiful crocodile photos we’ve ever seen » [1129 Views]
  7. Crow Tries to Fight Eagle, Gets Free Ride Instead » [932 Views]
  8. Saving the dhole: The forgotten ‘badass’ Asian dog more endangered than tigers » [874 Views]
  9. Six fishy reasons why humans should steer well clear of the sea » [825 Views]
  10. POLL: Should whale hunting in Alaska be banned? » [748 Views]

Top-Viewed Posts Last 12 Months

  1. POLL: Should the trophy hunting of giraffes be banned? » [11766 Views]
  2. » POLL: Should the ban on fox hunting be relaxed in the UK? [10726 Views]
  3. POLL: Should the Faroe Islands’ whale slaughter be allowed to continue? » [7572 Views]
  4. POLL: Should wildlife hunting contests be permitted in Idaho? » [7177 Views]
  5. POLL: Should bear hunting be banned in the US? » [4526 Views]
  6. POLL: Should lion canned hunting be banned in South Africa? » [4300 Views]
  7. Komodo and its Dragons » [4023 Views]
  8. POLL: Should the ban on South Africa’s horn trade be lifted? » [3458 Views]
  9. Poll: Should hunting of black bears in Florida be allowed? » [3259 Views]
  10. POLL: Should the wolf hunting contest in Idaho be stopped? » [3092 Views]