[WATCH] Autumn hunting season: Nine protected birds shot illegally

Another two protected birds have been rescued by the convervation group this month, in Malta and Gozo, after they were illegally shot

European Honey Buzzard, which was found in Girgenti (Photo: Birdlife Malta)
European Honey Buzzard, which was found in Girgenti (Photo: Birdlife Malta)

Birdlife Malta have rescued another two illegally shot protected birds, making them the eighth and ninth victims of the autumn hunting season, this year.

Two juvenile Honey Buzzards, known as ‘Kuccarda’ in Maltese, were recovered on 14 September, in Gozo and 21 September in Malta.

According to the conservation group, the first was handed over to Birdlife by the Gozo police. It was discovered that the bird had been shot with pellets, but had no broken bones, “meaning that it can hopefully be rehabilitated”, said the group.

The second Honey Buzzard was rescued yesterday from Girgenti, when a farmer in the area reported the incident to the police after the bird landed in his field, following being shot down. A vet confirmed this morning, that it too had been shot illegally.

On 14 September, another protected bird, known as a Common Kestrel, was also found injured, when it was found to have been shot by Siggiewi locals.

BirdLife Malta requested the support of the public, asking that incidents such as these be reported to BirdLife Malta in order for them to be able to rescue, rehabilitate and release birds, which have “fallen victim to illegal hunting to ensure they can continue their epic migratory journey”.

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