Operation “Lord of the Rings” in Italy – the fight against poaching

Hundreds of songbirds confiscated: Italian hunters need live decoys to hunt songbirds.

Because of the lawsuits brought by the committee against the bird murder and its partner LAC, the catching of birds has finally been banned since 2014, the hunters have to fall back on bred birds.
But there are doubts about aviculture in Italy.
As part of Operation “Lord of the Rings”, the Carabinieri have started to control the alleged breeding facilities.

It is now clear: something is wrong with many breeders.

They either do not have the facilities to successfully breed birds at all or they have far more young birds on offer than the existing adult birds can breed at all.
They simply rob the chicks from their nests in the wild or catch them illegally with nets.

They then come on the market with forged or manipulated cultivars.

In the last few months alone, there have been a dozen large police checks throughout Italy, during which hundreds of song- thrushes and blackbirds were seized, as well as protected species.

Committee members were there in May and June as experts and appraisers and helped to identify the birds illegally stolen from the wild.
The confiscated thrushes are now being prepared for their release in reception centers.


And I mean…An entire branch of industry has grown around bird hunting in Italy.
Hunting outfitters, off-road vehicle manufacturers and restaurants benefit from the hunting bacillus.

The state collects more than 700 million euros annually in the form of fees for hunting and gun licenses, catch and shooting permits and taxes on weapons, ammunition, vehicles and hunting equipment.

In 1993 a new national hunting law was passed in Rome, which largely forbids catching birds and placed almost all songbirds under nature protection.
Even so, almost 30 years later, the authorities are very reluctant to get the poaching under control. And the still legal form of hunting is an affront to nature and animal protection.

But there is reason to be hopeful.
In the big cities of Italy in particular, hardly anyone wants to endorse hunting anymore, and the hunters have great problems with their offspring.
The environmental and animal protection movement has produced numerous, very motivated associations that successfully promote broad animal protection and environmental awareness in Italy.

And the authorities are cracking down on poachers and bird trappers – as the committee reported to us in this case.
It’s a long process that comes with a lot of small successes.

In 10 years if there are really high penalties we will see a decrease in poaching

My best regards to all, Venus

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