CORRECTION: Due to a mistranslation on my part, it turns out that the Cyprus Hunters association is not trying to regulate themselves, but are instead simply lamenting that they cannot shoot as many as they used to. Apparently even the association’s leadership thinks that it is perfectly okay to continue devastating the birds’ numbers. This just goes to illustrate how irresponsible Κυνήγι Κύπρος actually is, and it’s deplorable.The Cyprus hunters’ association (Κυνήγι Κύπρος) has an update on their webpage reminding their members to limit the numbers of Song Thrush they shoot. It’s in Greek if you care to follow the link. I’ll translate the main point though:
Even though the old-time hunters will resent not shooting 50-60 τσίχλες (Song Thrush), they should limit themselves to between one and ten thrush. These birds are no longer as numerous as they once were, and continued hunting at the old levels would cause irreparable damage to the species’ population.
Of course I must applaud the hunters’ association for trying to tell their members to limit themselves. But honestly, they have no mechanism for monitoring their members and no penalty for those who disregard this limit. Why should any hunters pay heed to this mild suggestion?
I often hear hundreds of shotgun blasts per hour of birding in certain areas. The majority could care less of regulating themselves. And what’s more, I really doubt that hunters are even pausing to be sure that they’re only hunting legal game bird species, if for no other reason than the reality of split-second decision-making on whether to fire. For these birds, the reality is that most hunters shoot quickly, indiscriminately and often.
So to Κυνήγι Κύπρος: kudos for the good intentions, but your leadership appears impotent.