The Committee Against Bird Slaughter (CABS) said that its teams in Cyprus have found ten active trapping sites over the past three weeks, the lowest number they’ve ever recorded during spring migration season in the island.
According to CABS, four poachers were convicted as a result of their investigations.
In total 150 limesticks, 199 metal spring traps and 190m of ground nets were seized during the bird protection camp.
From the ground nets the activists freed Collared Flycatchers and Nightingales.
On the limesticks, a game warden found 11 dead warblers. The CABS team also released seven intact birds.
CABS, together with its Italian partner organisation LAC, have been carrying out small scale anti-poaching operations since 1999.
According to BirdLife, thousands of birds are killed every year in Cyprus. The worst year being 2014 with an estimated 2.5 million birds killed.
From various data sources there are 155 confirmed bird species that are affected by illegal bird trapping in Cyprus. 82 οf the 155 species are listed as conservation priority species under the EU Birds Directive and / or BirdLife International.
Each year up to 16 activists from Germany, Great Britain, Israel and Italy participate in CABS operations. They search for illegal limesticks, mist nets and electronic decoy devices and monitor the illegal trade in dead song birds in restaurants, grocery stores and butchers’ shops. In cooperation with the authorities traps and nets are dismantled.
If the teams locate illegal trapping equipment on fenced-in private property the police or the game service are called to remove the illegal devices and to prefer charges against offenders.
Also, restaurants that openly offer song birds on the menu, or that provide them for consumption on request, are immediately reported to the police.