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10,000 Birds Bound for Italian Restaurants

10,000 Birds Bound for Italian Restaurants

At the border of Hungary and  Romania officials discovered 10,000 songbirds no longer alive covered in boxes in a refrigerated truck also containing meat and sausages. Most of the birds were Skylarks, others were Bluethroats, Fieldfares, Mistle Thrushes, Reed Buntings and Pied Wagtails. They had all been gunned down with shotguns.

A European organization called the Committee against Bird Slaughter wrote, “The trade in shot Skylarks and other song birds is a multimillion business in Italy, costing the lives of hundreds of thousands of song birds every year. The Italian forest police annually seize thousands of illegally acquired wild birds in restaurants and game butchers shops, which always include deliveries of migrant birds smuggled in from the Balkans.” (Source: Komitee.de)

Reportedly some songbirds are used in gourmet dishes by a number of Italian chefs, possibly in northern Italy. Brescia is one of the cities where songbird consumption has been said to still be occurring. Lo Spiedo Bresciano has been called a signature dish and apparently has been for centuries. Hundreds of years ago poor people in the area were forbidden by the nobility from capturing larger wild animals to eat, so they focused on small birds. Today songbird poaching and eating there continues, though society as a whole may be against it.

It isn’t just Italy where songbirds are on the menu at some restaurants. Cyprus also has food outlets serving songbird dishes. According to the Committee Against Bird Slaughter millions of songbirds are killed each year, and many wind up on dinner or lunch plates.

Image Credit: DAVID ILIFF. License: CC-BY-SA 3.0

 

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Read more: Conscious Consumer, Nature & Wildlife, Wildlife

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128 comments

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5:31PM PST on Jan 13, 2012

Horrible...

7:17AM PST on Jan 13, 2012

horrible

5:45AM PST on Jan 13, 2012

Where I live in Northern Europe our songbirds and birds of prey are declining at a fast rate due almost entirely to this senseless slaughter. Please help us by boycotting all things from these countries, and especially from Malta and Cyprus. For example 90,000 birds were killed in Cyprus from 1 - 11 Sept. 2011. Autumn 2010 1.5 million birds killed in just 2 districts in Cyprus. Malta is just as bad where they blast away at anything that flies even in reserves. While it is illegal to shoot or trap birds on spring migration and while EU member countries are obliged to protect birds on autumn migration as well it is ignored by the Mediterranean countries as well as in the Balkans. The EU was supposed to deal with this but as usual they have done nothing. Please help us.

2:34PM PST on Jan 10, 2012

Very sad! And ridiculous. If I go to Italy, I will certainly not eat birds.To make money, they deprive everybody else of the opportunity of listening to them.

8:35AM PST on Jan 10, 2012

Sad, but no worse than raising animals for slaughter. At least these birds et a taste at real life!

9:19AM PST on Jan 9, 2012

I don't see the problem of eating a songbird even if I would not do it myself, it's just like some americans react to us over here eating horses, lol. (Vegans, please do not bother to answer me if you are gonna preach upon me how bad I am for eating meat. Thank you.) However I don't like this slaughter of birds if they are about to become extinct.

Although this article make it sound like songbirds are generally more worth than other animals?!

9:19AM PST on Jan 9, 2012

I don't see the problem of eating a songbird even if I would not do it myself, it's just like some americans react to us over here eating horses, lol. (Vegans, please do not bother to answer me if you are gonna preach upon me how bad I am for eating meat. Thank you.) However I don't like this slaughter of birds if they are about to become extinct.

Although this article make it sound like songbirds are generally more worth than other animals?!

7:51AM PST on Jan 9, 2012

Isn't it horrifying? These lovely songbirds will disappear and we have ourselves to blame. Humanity at it's lowest!

3:40PM PST on Jan 8, 2012

He Jake, cannot find this kommitee against birdslaughter.
I want to ask them - but I´m ready to go in the springtime to catch those
balkan killers with ??
Contact me !
Thanks

1:16PM PST on Jan 8, 2012

are they nearing extinction?

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