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The EU Plans to Ban Hunting of Several Huntable Birds in Member States

The Federation for Hunting and Conservation – Malta (FKNK) repeats its plea to hunters and trappers to cast their vote at the forthcoming European Parliament (EP) Elections, since it is imperative that Maltese hunters and trappers are adequately represented in the EU by MEPs with genuine intentions to safeguard their traditional socio-cultural passions of hunting and trapping, as has been the case with MEP Alex Agius Saliba, who was also the Vice-President of the EP “Hunting” Intergroup.  Read on… 

On 28 June 2024, that is when the European Parliament Elections will be over and done with, there will be a NADEG (the EU Expert Group on the Birds and Habitats Directives) meeting in Brussels with Member States at which the European Commission (EC) will decide on the sustainability of hunting for the first set of 15 “non-secure” huntable bird species.


The outcome of this meeting could lead to the European Commission writing to Member States urging them to halt hunting for some species.

The List of the first set of 15 species, *8 of which are hunted in Malta, is the following:

  1. Long-tailed Duck (Clangula hyemalis),

  2. Velvet Scoter (Melanitta fusca),

  3. Common Pochard (Aythya ferina)*,

  4. Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula),

  5. Garganey (Spatula querquedula)*,

  6. Northern Shoveler (Spatula clypeata)*,

  7. Eurasian Wigeon (Mareca penelope)*,

  8. Pintail (Anas acuta)*,

  9. Eurasian Oystercatcher (Haematopus ostralegus),

  10. Northern Lapwing (Vanellus vanellus)*,

  11. Ruff (Calidris pugnax)*,

  12. Common Snipe (Gallinago gallinago)*,

  13. Common Redshank (Tringa totanus),

  14. Mew Gull (Larus canus),

  15. Great Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus).

And since these proposed bans, besides the EU’s present menace to ban the hunting of Malta’s chief game-bird, the Turtle Dove (Streptopelia turtur), apparently will not satisfy the EU’s anti-hunting lust, the EC plans to propose further hunting bans of another 19 species, which includes a further 7 species which are huntable in Malta, these being:

      1. Water Rail (Rallus aquaticus),

      2. Common Starling (Sturnus vulgaris),

      3. Skylark (Alauda arvensis),

      4. Redwing (Turdus musicus),

      5. Common Quail (Coturnix coturnix),

      6. Common Teal (Anas crecca),

      7. Coot (Fulica atra).

This outrageous and certainly impractical, non-science based, therefore unacceptable situation, would reduce Malta’s huntable land species from the present 31 to just 15 and with practically zero species that may be hunted from sea-craft!

Nevertheless, the FKNK is confident that with its expertise input, in coordination with its 36-year FACE (European Federation for Hunting and Conservation) Membership and sincere Maltese MEPs involvement, the strong politically willed Maltese Government will stand up to such non-binding EU schemes.

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