Bird protection camps
Cyprus is a useful short cut for European birds that migrate via the eastern flyways. Instead of flying along the coastline of Lebanon and eastern Turkey some fly direct from Israel to Southern Turkey (and vice versa) and shorten their migration route by some 300 km. Unfortunately this fact is well known to the hunters and trappers on Cyprus, who lie in wait for their feathered guests with lead shot, limesticks and mist nets.
CABS, together with its Italian partner organisation LAC, have carried out small scale anti-poaching operations since 1999. The scale of poaching, which had been getting totally out of hand, convinced us that we needed to step up our efforts. Since 2008 we have therefore conducted larger and more internationally representative bird protection camp in the Republic of Cyprus in the southern part of the Mediterranean island. Since 2010 we have teamed up successfully with an important new local ally, Friends of the Earth Cyprus,
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 our teams locate illegal trapping equipment on fenced-in private property the police or the Game Fund are called to remove the illegal devices and to prefer charges against offenders. Good cooperation with the responsible authorities, in particular the regional police and the anti-poaching squad, the Game Fund wildlife wardens and the SBA police in the British administered areas is essential and close links have been established. These have already borne fruit and our information has led to confiscation of trapping equipment and prosecution of poachers.
Restaurants that openly offer song birds on the menu, or that provide them for consumption on request, are immediately reported to the police.
In the course of our operations on Cyprus we collect annually as a rule some 2,000 limesticks and at least a couple of dozen large nets.
Our operations on Cyprus are funded by private donations collected primarily in Germany and with the assistance of the Foundation Pro Diversity. If you want to support our international nature and wildlife conservation operations you can do this by making a donation here.