Flamingoes' shooting in Malta

To: undisclosed-recipients: ;
Subject: Flamingoes' shooting in Malta
From: "david camilleri" <>
Date: Sun, 11 Aug 2002 10:09:42 -0400
Sunday, August 11, 2002

< Flamingoes' shooting backs claims for more enforcement officers >
Two flamingoes were shot last Thursday close to St Thomas Bay in full view of a group of young foreign English language students, BirdLife Malta said yesterday.

The incident happened at around 2.30 p.m. when a group of Italian students were
in the area and saw the three flamingoes standing in shallow water.

Suddenly they saw two hunters approach from land and shoot at them. While one of the flamingoes managed to escape apparently unscathed, the other two were hit by
shotgun pellets.

One was still flapping its wings, injured, in a red-stained patch of seawater
until the hunter walked to it and wrung its neck to kill it, BirdLife said.

The teenage students tried to scare the birds away to save them.

While condemning this killing, BirdLife Malta called on the authorities to put
an immediate stop to these illegal hunting activities which continue even
throughout the closed shooting season.

"It is evident that a substantial number of hunters insist on hunting all the
year round and are not able to control themselves", BirdLife said.

BirdLife Malta also called on the government to take concerted action to stop the illegal hunting and trapping which is giving Malta a bad name and which is
harming tourism.

The organisation said it received several other reports of migrating flamingoes over the past week, including a flock of 16 which flew over Qawra Point early in
the afternoon on Wednesday flying towards L-Ahrax tal-Mellieha.

BirdLife Malta said it has information that Administrative Law Enforcement
police had noticed a flock of three flamingoes in the north of Malta, and had
increased their watch for illegal hunters.

But since their resources are limited there was little they could do to control the illegal activities of hunters breaking the law in different parts of Malta
and Gozo.

BirdLife insisted that the current staff complement of ALE was not enough to
deal with breaches of the hunting law, let alone other environmental matters.

It is evident that a full-time, well resourced ALE section is needed to cope
with the enormity of the situation, BirdLife added.

This article may also be viewed at

david camilleri

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