Cyprus Promises to Stop Bird Trapping
The government of Cyprus has promised to put an end to the illegal bird trapping that is rampant in the Mediterranean island country and sees millions of birds killed yearly to be offered up as expensive delicacies (known collectively as ambelopoulia). Speaking at a European conference on illegal killing of birds held in Larnaca, Interior Minister Neoclis Sylikiotis said that the government was working hard to stamp out this illegal activity and meet their obligations to the European Union. Every year, authorities report a substantial number of poaching cases with a big chunk relating to killing birds with the use of nets and limesticks, the minister said. He said the profit from the illegal trade of these birds “is probably one of the sources of the problem.”
Due to this, Sylikiotis said, authorities, for the past two years at least, have charged numerous restaurant owners caught selling ambelopoulia. However, contrary to popular belief, illegal bird trapping is not a practice exclusively found in Cyprus and other Mediterranean countries.
“The illegal killing of birds is a widespread practice that very few countries have managed to stop,” a report by BirdLife International said.