As the autumn hunting season officially blasts off today, Birdlife Malta has appealed to the public to report any illegalities they may witness.
 
The laws allow the killing of 40 species of birds during five whole months of autumn, 12 of which also from the sea. 
 
 
September brings with it the start of an "exciting time" of year for all those who love birds and nature in Malta, with the autumn migration of raptors and various other birds. 
 
BirdLife remains critical of the fact that during the peak migration of raptors, hunting is now allowed until 7pm. There was a time when this curfew was more effective to safeguard these birds since hunting was not allowed after 3pm.
 
It said it was pleased that the authorities have acknowledged the need to limit the hunting season of turtle doves - recently certified as being in a vulnerable status by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). However, it said it believes that the measures will not be effective. Turtle doves hardly migrate after September.
 
"We expect the police ALE to immediately take the necessary actions against those who are caught breaking regulations."
 
While hoping that illegalities continue to decrease, BLM urged anyone witnessing illegal hunting to immediately report the case to the police and to Birdlife.
 
Illegalities and cases of injured birds can be reported to Birdlife by callling 21 347645/6 during office hours or our hotline 7925 5697 (strictly only for wildlife crime emergencies) during evenings and weekends. Other reports can be sent by email to info@birdlifemalta.org or by leaving a Facebook message on www.facebook.com/birdlifemalta.
 

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