Sunday, October 18, 2009

Bird Hunting in Malta


There goes my staying late in bed this weekend. Living near the countryside does have its repercussions. Why is it that weekend or no weekend I have to be woken up so early? Today, (like in the past 4 weeks) the constant gunshots of heartless bird hunters, somewhere in the vicinity of our house woke me up at around 5:30am. I can't imagine, for the life of me, how they can make out the birds flying in the darkness of morning. Don't they strain their eyes? Their incessant killing starts from 5am!!! Today, I've been tossing and turning in bed waiting for the shots to abate - in vain. Blessed Sunday indeed!


As I'm typing, the sound of gunshots is still going on. The sound of the lead pellets hitting our skylight and the side windows is very unnerving. I feel sorry for those birds, that, after flying for so many kilometers in so many days, their life ends up in one second here in Malta. It's heartbreaking. Unfortunately, the news that makes headlines is only the bad publicity! The BBC and other foreign news are having a field day with our hunting issues. Take a look at these links and you'll see what I mean:





Our island is rarely in the news but wonder of wonders when our hunting season opens we get to be very 'popular' or should I say 'infamous' with the rest of the E.U countries.

Recently, Maltese educators were asked to refrain from passing any negative comments to the students with regards to bird hunting because they were told that the children might turn against their hunter parents!



If the FKNK (Federation for Hunting and Conservation representatives) had the time to prepare the Teachers' Pack, I suggest that they keep on reading it themselves. As a teacher, I would never impart positive comments regarding hunting. Hunters should go and get a life! They should abide by the law! The lengths hunters will go through to justify shooting birds is amazing.

img credit Wildlife Extra

16 comments:

Robin said...

They're not even hunting them for food? Just for sport, and leaving the carcasses on the ground? That's horrific.

Zen said...

Yes, Robin. It's their idea of 'fun'.

Juniper said...

Uck, such a waste of life, it is sad and worth pointing out. Can't believe they are out there shooting in the dark at 5 AM?!!

Zen said...

Yes, Juniper, I'm not kidding. The first shots woke me up fivish in the morning. Couldn't believe my eyes when I checked out the clock beside me.

Dina said...

This is so sad!! Did you read the article on the times a couple of weeks ago stating that some of them were suffering depression because they could not hunt(kill beautiful birds)?

Zen said...

@Dina - You must be joking!!! Suffering from depression because they were not allowed to kill migrating birds?!!! Whatever next?!

Mark Kreider said...

Amen..., amen,... amen!

Argentum Vulgaris said...

I have never heard of this before, is this some kind of tradition? Sounds extremely warped to me. I haven't checked the sites listed, because I tried yesterday and one of them had a script that froze my pc, so I'm not trying again.

I will do a search on Google though to learn more.

AV

Fay said...

Congratulations! I have reviewed "Anecdotes From Malta" and I'm pleased to inform you that your blog will appear on Blogging Women.

I've enjoyed reading through your blog post (still have more to go through) and look forward to future post.

Welcome aboard and continued success with this blog.

Zen said...

Hello Argentum! I was quite surprised when you told me that one of my links froze your pc.You make me sound like a malicious hacker (which I'm definitely not : ) ..do you mind telling me which one? I rechecked them all and all of them came up as usual. Yes - we have strange traditions..unfortunately this small number of people with warped intentions make a bad name for our little island.

Zen said...

Thanks Fay, really appreciate your encouragement.

Owl said...

Disgusting. You say it's illegal? Sounds like the smoking ban. Malta seems to have a disregard for law, or apathy in enforcing it. Malta is very reliant on tourism, and if such issues are not sorted out people will holiday in more respectful countries.

Malta needs some proactive policing. Targeting gunshots on such a small island can hardly be difficult. Or is it political apathy? I am fond of Malta, but I'm discovering it's darker side which is putting me off.

On a separate issue, Malta's beaches expansive? In my three months there I didn't bother setting foot on them, only walking past, which didn't take long. I would never recommend Malta for it's beaches. I consider Malta a historical attraction and have enjoyed that aspect.

Thanks for the post. Hope you get some sleep.

Zen said...

Owl: Yes like all other countries, Malta has its darker side. And as you said hunting issues could be due to political apathy. Glad to hear that you enjoyed the historical attractions of our island.

Argentum Vulgaris said...

Zen, sorry, didn't for a moment think it was you. and as I opened the 3 at the same time, maybe it is just my aged pc that was at fault. I know as an aged unit, that i slow down sometimes...

AV

Jo said...

Where I live the deer herds get too large at times and the land cannot support their numbers so they start starving to death. When that happens, a limited amount of hunting is allowed for a 2-3 week period. Figure that is at least somewhat kinder than letting them starve.

However I cannot stand 'sport' or trophy hunting of any sort...I find that particularly sad and repulsive. I wish you (and the birds) luck. Perhaps one day the hungers will learn to 'shoot' with cameras instead of guns.

Zen said...

@ Jo: amen to your wish! With regards to the deer herds story - I would have never imagined that deer can be so numerous at times! But although I'm against hunting of all sorts I agree with what you said - it's better than letting the poor animals die a slow death brought about by starvation.