Malta: the mafia of the bird catchers!

In Malta the bird catching is a popular sport.  Unlike in most other fishing areas in the Mediterranean, however, the captured songbirds do not end up in the pan, but end up as pets in the living rooms of supposed “bird lovers”.
In Malta’s capital, Valletta, a large bird market takes place every Sunday, which is even mentioned in the guidebooks as a tourist attraction.


With Malta’s accession to the European Union in 2004, the end of legal songbird catching should be heralded. The accession treaty stipulated that first of all the annual fishing time would be shortened, and on 31.12.2008 bird catching was finally banned.
In fact, the bird catchers had to shut down their nets for a few years, until the fall of 2014.

Prime Minister Joseph Muscat decided to allow bird trapping between mid-October and the end of December. The Social Democrat, who came to power in 2013, had promised support to the hunting lobby during the election campaign.

In addition, the government gave in to the massive pressure of the birdcatcher lobby and again allowed the bird catch against EU law.

Since then thousands of finches may be caught legally for several weeks in late autumn! In 2015, for example, 12,000 linnets, 800 goldfinches, 4,500 greenfinches, 2,350 siskins, 500 hawfinches, 5,000 chaffinches and 2,350 female carps were released.


Maltese birdcatchers involved: In a special operation this week, three committee teams have observed 9 active traps with huge nets from different observation points off the coast west of Mtahleb. The birdcatchers had equipped the illegal facilities with live decoys and electronic baits to catch protected liners.

For more…at:

My best regards, Venus