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Welcome to the Committee Against Bird Slaughter (CABS)

Always the latest information: Diary from the 2014 Bird Protection Camps

You want to know how many traps and nets we have already collected, how many poachers have been caught because of our information and any other news from our Bird Protection Camps?

Then our online diary is the right place for you. Throughout the summer and autumn of 2014 we will be reporting regularly on our ongoing actions.

Click here for the diary »»

Malta: Permits for ´supersize-trapping-sites´ criticised
Bag limit for finches already exploited by poachers (16.10.2014)

CABS has criticised the opening of the bird trapping season on Malta next Monday as a clear breach of the EU´s Birds Directive. The NGO announced that it will monitor the situation in the field with two teams until December. The volunteers will document the amount and impact of trapping on the countryside as well as report any misuse to the police. A detailed report will also be sent to the European Commission in Brussels which is currently preparing infringement procedures against Malta over the comeback of finch trapping.

Read our actual press release here»»

Malta: Blow against illegal finch trade in Rabat (27.09.2014)

Bird trappers have illegally offered Greenfinches for sale in the city centre of Rabat, approximately 50 metres away from the police station. A CABS covert team – disguised as tourists – visited the place this morning and witnessed how birds have been offered for sale between 30 and 100 Euros each. “We saw about 20 cages with Greenfinches placed on a wall and many people standing around. We asked one of the men what he was doing and he answered that he is selling the birds”, said CABS volunteer Jonathan Blair. “When we saw that most of the birds had no rings we alerted the police”. A joint AFM/ALE patrol as well a MEPA official arrived at the scene within 20 minutes. The birds and their owners were brought to the Rabat police station where the men have been questioned.

Read more in our today´s press release »»

Malta: CABS praises PM´s decision to close hunting season (20.09.14)

CABS today welcomed the decision of the Maltese government to close the hunting season due to the large number of protected birds killed in the last days. “We raise our hats to the Prime minister for having the nerves to make this momentous decision. I am sure it was a tough call but the situation was really out of control in parts of the island.”, CABS president Heinz Schwarze said. “After months of empty rethoric coming from his Parliamentary Secretary for Animal Rights Dr Muscat has shown that he really means business”.

Our press release can be found here »»

Read an actual article in the Times of Malta »»

Malta: Hunters target protected raptors - again! (19.09.2014)

This morning a CABS team observed a protected Marsh Harrier being shot down east of Safi, only 150 metres away from the runway strip of the Malta International Airport. The bird was shot from and fell into a property surrounded by high walls and monitored by several CCTV cameras. CABS said that the property is exclusively used for hunting and has been the scene of several bird of prey massacres in the last years. In another incident a CABS team filmed a Marsh Harrier being shot down at the Dingli cliffs this afternoon at 16:45 PM. Furthermore CABS today released a picture of a Honey Buzzard with severe shotgun injuries. The photo was taken close to Buskett Gardens.

Our actual press release about the ongoing poaching on Malta can be read here »»

Malta: Hunters kill protected birds
Bird Guards film a Grey Heron being shot down at Bidni (16.09.2014)

In the last 24 hours teams of the Committee Against Bird Slaughter (CABS) witnessed hunters shooting down 4 protected birds. These include a Kestrel killed near Safi at around 7:35 AM this morning, a Honey Buzzard which was shot down in Has-Saptan valley today at around 8:15 AM and a Grey Heron which was blasted out of the sky close to Bidni at 8:23 AM.

Our press release from 16.09.2014 and the actual video from the shot down of the Grey Heron can be found here»»

Operation "Fatal flight" to begin on Friday
NGO confirms ´massive´ ALE turnover (10.09.2014)

In the last days autumn migration of birds has kicked in with good numbers of Marsh Harriers, falcons as well as the first flocks of herons and Honey Buzzards as well as a total of more than 100 Greater Flamingos arriving and roosting on Malta and Gozo, CABS said today. To ensure the safe passage of protected birds CABS announced that it will conduct a large ´bird protection camp´ against illegal hunting and bird trapping on Malta from September 12 until 5 October. A total of 18 experienced birdwatchers as well as a number of local supporters will be involved in operation "Fatal flight". CABS confirmed reports about a massive turnover and the forced transfer of many experienced ALE seargents and officers in the last months.

Read our actual press release here »»

CABS and SPA release their Cyprus Spring 2014 Bird Protection Camp Field Report (05.09.2014)

In 2014, the 7th Spring Bird Protection Camp was conducted over a period of four weeks, from 6 to 19 April and from 28 to 9 May, to cover the most of the pre-nuptial migration. A total of 11 volunteers, from Cyprus, Germany, Italy, Hungary and Slovenia participated in the camp. As a result of the 23 days of joint operations with the Cyprus Police Anti-Poaching Squad, 2,256 limesticks, 27 mist nets and 10 electronic decoys were seized. In addition, more than 700 protected wild birds were found dead and collected as evidences, while dozens of birds in captivity were released from traps and aviaries. In total, 15 poachers were caught red-handed and prosecuted by the Anti-Poaching Squad of the Cyprus Police.

You can download the report here »»

Violent ´Gangster style´ attack on CABS team in France
Bird trapper arrested (02.09.2014)

French bird trappers have savagely attacked a team of the Committee Against Bird Slaughter (CABS) with tear gas and nearly killed a German birdwatcher with a tractor. The incident which took place yesterday afternoon near the town of Tartas in the Southwest of France is the latest in a series of acts of violence against conservationists who work against the illegal trapping of the Ortolan Bunting. The trapper was arrested and being questioned in the Tartas police station until late yesterday evening.

Read more in our actual press release »»

CABS Ortolan Bunting bird protection camp has begun
CABS volunteers search for traps in South-West France (29.08.2014)

The CABS Ortolan camp in France starts today: Until 2 September, CABS members from Germany and Italy will search for Ortolan trapping sites in the south west of France. In the Les Landes département tens of thousands of the endangered buntings are caught every year. The animals are captured, fattened over a period of weeks, finally they are drowned in alcohol and sold to supposed “gourmets” for hundred of euros. The authorities mostly turn a blind eye to this. Our teams will try to force the police to intervene at active trapping sites.

You can find more information on our anti-Ortolan Bunting trapping operations here»»

Reports about the progress of the operation can be found in the Online Diary »

Ischia: 138 illegal traps and 722 cartridges confiscated

Operations against illegal songbird trapping in Italy: In the last 5 days our Bird Guards have located and dismantled a total of 114 illegal snap traps and 2 large bow traps for songbirds on the island of Ischia. Also on Ischia, an operation conducted by the game wardens of the WWF in cooperation with CABS led to the arrest of a poacher targeting protected Whinchats, Pied Flycatchers and Nightingales. A police search in the house of the man resulted in the confiscation of 3 shotguns, 722 shotgun cartridges, 16 dead protected birds and 2 dozends of illegal traps. The man is expected to be arraigned in court soon.

European Commission: Cooperation between CABS and Cyprus Police is a key element of enforcement (06.02.2014)

The European Commission has urged the Cypriot authorities to ensure that anti-poaching activities of the Committee Against Bird Slaughter (CABS) and other environmental organisations will continue receiving the necessary police support. In an answer to a Parliamentary question in the European Commissioner for the Environment, Janec Potocnik, declared that the Commission considers the cooperation of the Cyprus Police with non-governmental organisations fighting illegal bird trapping as a key element of enforcement efforts in Cyprus.

Read more in our actual press release »»

Sardinia: CABS volunteers dismantle 3.355 illegal snare traps (04.12.2013)

In spite of the heavy rainfalls in Sardinia last month our volunteers have collected a total of 3.355 illegal snare traps for songbirds since the beginning of the camp. After a tip-off from our camp participants the Carabinieri installed a road-block in the area north of Cagliari where illegal bird trapping is still rampant. Three poachers were arrested after 30 freshly-caught birds and about 100 illegal snare traps were found in a concealed hollow behind the dashboard of their car. The men will be taken to court soon. Our operations in Sardinia will continue until 8 December.

You can read more on our operations in Sardinia here »»

CABS bird protection camp on Malta comes to a successful end (30.09.2013)

The CABS bird protection camp on Malta & Gozo ended today. From 13 Sep some 40 volunteers from 9 different countries were on operations to guard the roost sites and migration corridors on Malta and its sister island Gozo. Several illegal bird trappers and poachers were caught red-handed in cooperation with the environmental police unit ALE and the Gozo police; but above all thousands of migrating birds of prey, herons, storks, Bee-eaters and other protected bird species were seen safely off the islands on their way to their winter quarters in Africa.

More information on the events of the camp can be found here »»