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Turtle Doves Hunting in Spring on Malta is Sustainable

Another ecologically viable turtle doves’ spring hunting Sustainability Index* of 0.760 (2022 0.703) has been achieved from a Study that the Federation for Hunting and Conservation – Malta (FKNK) undertook through the voluntary participation of a number of its hunter members during the derogated hunting open season of 18 to 30 April 2023. In percentage and practical terms this means that 76% of ‘opportunity’ birds were not taken.


Other interesting statistics and observations gathered from the Study reveal:

  • An average fraction of opportunity per hour taken per hunter of 0.240 or 24%;

  • An average of 3804 hunters presence (out of the 7868 special licenced) every open season day;

  • A constant corresponding relationship vis-à-vis observed turtle doves, opportunities and taken birds on the following first two graphs;

  • That the two peaks of observed turtle doves of 20 and 23 April 2023, also correspond with the peaks on the third graph which has been published by ECOSERV Ltd., a private Company that is commissioned by the Maltese Government to monitor and report about birds’ migration over the Maltese islands, in particular just before, during and for a short period after a hunting and/or trapping open season.

* Sustainability Index – average fraction of opportunities per hour per hunter that evade taking.






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