Our partner League pour la Protection des Oiseaux (LPO) has done a great blow against the illegal trade in songbirds for restaurants in France: A poacher has been shown to have had a total of 10,000 protected robins in the department of Les Landes in southwestern France over the past 9 years, robin, finch and titmouse caught, plucked it and sold it as kitchen-ready skewers (!!!)
The estimated profit is 50,000 euros. The traps he used for this are allowed for the “traditional” and non-commercial catch of skylarks, but are often used illegally, as the current case impressively shows.
Beginners of Ortol, against whom the “committee against bird murder” has been working in the same region for many years, also resort illegally to this type of trap. The poacher and three of his biggest customers – including apparently an internationally known rugby player – will have to go to court in Dax next September.
My comment: Rare and beautiful birds are illegally shot or caught by game killers for fun before they are plucked, skinned, and eaten – or simply thrown away.
Italy is one of the worst offenders on the great migration route between Africa and Eurasia. The worst is Egypt, where 5.7 million birds are illegally killed every year. It is followed by Syria and Lebanon with 3.9 million and 2.6 million birds killed, respectively.
A study by BirdLife International includes a breakdown of killings by country, here is the map:
In France, an estimated 149,000 to 895,000 birds are killed illegally each year.
In the name of tradition, birds are caught illegally in many regions and many non-target species are killed as by-catches. Trapping is the most common form of illegal killing of birds in France.
Of the 349 bird species studied in France, around 32% are killed to a significant extent illegally. Eurasian chaffinch, robins and Ortholan bunting are killed in large numbers . The Ortolan bunting is considered an expensive “delicacy” and can bring in up to 150 euros – for French gourmets it was an entry-level ritual for centuries to eat this bird.
Despite the illegality, the species is tolerated.
It is terrifying how few people notice that there are almost no birdsong in the forest. They don’t care.
What are we so busy with that we no longer notice the absence of the beautiful company of birds in the forest?
You can only hear roaring machines that smash, suck, blow, cut, destroy, saw, flatten …… how far we have gone from nature … and we find ourselves really great and powerful. ..
The number of birds is falling, the number of catchers is increasing.
We owe that to criminal politics and a Stone Age society that still does the murder for fun and has it on their menu!
My best regards to all, Venus