Mickey Malta

Notes from the zone where 'normal' things don't happen very often

Posts Tagged ‘Hunting

Hunters shoot at anything. Period

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Live and let live

I can’t understand why hunters get offended when we say that they shoot anything that moves. I guess that the truth hurts. Now that they can’t shoot birds in Spring, some of them are aiming their guns at different targets.

Someone shot at a cart in Manikata last Saturday, and it turns out that this was being used by Birdlife volunteers. I wonder who. Hmmmmmmmmmmm, Let me think. Elementary my dear Lino. If this poor car was moving, I would understand that the self-fulfilling prophecy must have got the better of some hunters (remember, they shoot at anything that moves). But this car was parked, for heaven’s sake. It wasn’t even moving or flying!

I guess that we have to update the saying to: hunters shoot at anything. Period.


Written by mickeymalta

19/04/2010 at 09:10

FKNK at the Apollo

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Ladies and Gentlemen . . . . welcome to Live at the Apollo . . . exclusively from Malta . . . . A FKNK Production . . . KIll...Thrill

Ladies and Gentlemen . . . . welcome to Live at the Apollo . . . exclusively from Malta . . . . A FKNK Production . . . KIll...Thrill

In the absence of good stand-up comedy acts, we have a number of people who volunteer to perform some creatively weird acts from time to time.

As I’m sitting a few metres away from the Apollo theatre in London, I’m seriously considering talking to the management into giving the FKNK top brass a chance for an audition. They are hilarious. They’re a unique cocktail blending a serious lack of a sense of irony with huge chips on shoulders: an award-winning cocktail indeed. I also took the initiative to come up with a title for this show: “Kill ….. Thrill”.

I’m still bent down in laughter and wiping tears from my eyes. My colleagues thought that someone must have spiked my breakfast this morning. The truth is that this fit was not a result happy substance. It’s my reaction to the FKNK’s reaction to illegal shooting. They issued a press release condemning the recent illegal hunting activity. I was, quite naively perhaps, expecting the Federation to offer any form of possible assistance to the authorities to help them identify the perpetrators, and make sure that they’re brought to justice.

Instead, like a suspense thriller, the press release takes an (un)expected twist. All of a sudden, the FKNK lashes out an acrimonious attack on the ban on Spring hunting. I have to quote their own words verbatim, as it’s so hilarious, that I’m afraid I would spoil it if I had to report in my own words:

“These reports have proved yet again that not opening the traditional hunting season for the otherwise legal quarry as the turtle dove and the quail in Spring, has done nothing to stop these few law-breakers who still persist in shooting protected species,” ……….

“It is morally wrong and unfair that the government is banning traditional hunting and trapping because it fails to control the few irresponsible law-breakers, and the thousands of bona fide hunters and trappers are suffering very serious health and mental consequences, a couple of which have already led to tragedies”

So there you have it. Next time you see anyone getting affectionate with a fly or doing cartwheel turns in the middle of the pitch dark St Venera tunnels, you have the answer: it’s another hunter who doesn’t have a clue how to kill time (is that a pun?).

Tragically, FKNK decided to resort to emotional blackmail, and it seems to be attributing the responsibility for the incidents committed (willingly) by hunters who went berserk because of the hunting ban to all non hunters. No one forced the two individuals to perform the actions they did so, please stop putting the blame on us. When is this Federation going to stop digging a its own grave deeper and deeper?

I hate quoting myself, but in this case it may be the only option. If the FKNK wants to convince us to, maybe contemplate or dwell on the idea to possibly starting to consider to give credit to what they’re saying, they should get their act together and show commitment towards the rule of law.

This is the same Federation that organised a number of protests, even recently, where participants got violent and people were injured. This is the same Federation whose leaders use aggressive language whenever they address their supporters. This is the Federation that represents men with guns and blood on their hands (even though it’s animal blood, it still is blood). This Federation refers to killing as a sport. This is a Federation that fails to realise that it enjoys no support whatsoever from anyone outside its members. Unlike other organisations, it’s not indifference that non hunters feel towards the issue, but revulsion.

That’s due to the attitude of a number of hunters towards us common folk, and because these poor hunters are represented by buffoons who shall be performing at the London Apollo quite soon.

Be advised, though, there is a huge risk that the performance would be short lived as it is quite possible for this production to be shot down by management because of poor quality and nonsense talk from the performers.

Written by mickeymalta

22/04/2009 at 12:41


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""This poacher was photographed hunting for three hours on April 15 at San Martin. All of BirdLife's footage and photos have been forwarded to the police for further investigation." The Times

""This poacher was photographed hunting for three hours on April 15 at San Martin. All of BirdLife's footage and photos have been forwarded to the police for further investigation." The Times

A report in today’s The Times:

Two men cover their faces with white balaclavas and run through a wheat-field wielding shotguns. They have been reported for hunting illegally, and despite their attempts to flee, the police have quickly intercepted them and taken them in for questioning.

This is just one of the incidents witnessed by the BirdLife’s team of birdwatchers who have come to Malta from eight different countries to record bird migration and keep an eye open for illegalities.

They use similar tactics as the hunters, hiding in bushes and waiting for their targets to expose themselves unwittingly. But their weapons are video cameras and mobile phones, and as soon as they witness an illegality, they alert the police.

Hunting is illegal in spring and has been since last year but videos shot by BirdLife’s team in the past week show some hunters are ignoring the law.

BirdLife yesterday showed the media footage portraying hunters shooting next to residential areas, killing protected birds and running from the police. One video showed two men beating a bird with a rock and then stashing it in a rubble wall.

“The police are doing an amazing job with their limited resources. But their resources are very limited. It was only after we spoke to the Office of the Prime Minister that things have improved,” BirdLife president Joseph Mangion told a press conference yesterday.

He said many times when reports were made, the police would not arrive in time to catch the perpetrators.

BirdLife said more than 950 shots were recorded by its team in the past nine days. Since the beginning of March, 17 shot protected birds were passed on to BirdLife, compared to four during the same period last year.

“There has been a significant increase in the number of shot birds compared to last year. Many poachers are making the most of the season with impunity to the law,” he explained.

The government had to commit itself to developing a Wildlife Crime Unit to carry out investigations and work side by side by the police, he said.

“We are not going to give in. Malta can benefit from things like eco-tourism, since we are lucky enough to be on the migration route. But these things are damaging out reputation.”

He said that in response to more surveillance, the hunters had employed new tactics, like shooting birds while they were asleep at night, or using muffled guns.

He said not all hunters were defying the law and it was unfair on those who obeyed the law if those who committed illegalities were let off lightly.

When contacted, the hunter’s federation, FKNK slammed BirdLife’s tactics and said all these allegations were simply part of an ongoing misleading campaign.

“The media is not interested and doesn’t seem to care what hunters and trappers are being subjected to, both health wise and mentally,” FKNK spokesman Joe Perici Calascione said.

“If you bother to ask around, you will probably get to know about two if not three terrible tragedies that occurred just last week as a direct consequence of the ban on Malta’s traditional socio-cultural passions, and which are not reported in the media,” he added, without specifying.

When asked whether FKNK agreed with BirdLife’s Wildlife Crime Unit proposal, he said the federation had always condemned any illegal hunting.

“We believe the police are already going out of their way in this issue and do not deserve this obsessive and unfair criticism from BirdLife.”http://www.timesofmalta.com/articles/view/20090421/local/poachers-making-most-of-the-season

 I find Perici Calascione’s statements quite interesting. I must admit that his creativity is commendable. “The media is not interested and doesn’t seem to care what hunters and trappers are being subjected to, both health wise and mentally”.

If I’m not mistaken, it’s the tourists, families, and individuals that are on the receiving end of threats and gun pointing.  What does he actually mean by “an ongoing misleading campaign”? Was he actually implying that Birdlife paid someone to pose as a hunter wearing a balaclava and film him shooting at birds?

Had I not been living in the same country, I could have possibly contemplated the remote idea of giving Perici Calasione the benefit of the doubt. But unfortunately for him, I have seen the lengths that some, and I repat some, hunters are willing to go to in order to satisfy their urges.

If the FKNK wants to be credible, it should collaborate with the police to help them identify the hunters who flout the law, and make sure that they are prosecuted accordingly. This is what good willed Imams and religious leaders in UK Muslim communities are doing. They are constantly helping police to identify potential Islamic extremists, and they make sure that these are removed from their communities. Collaboration is a much more powerful tool than attack; both in terms of effectivness, and in terms of public relations.

I do agree, however, with Perici Calascione’s definition of recent events as being ‘tragic’ as I heard what happened to the people he’s referring to. The only thing I can say is that in both cases, it was the individuals’ choice to take the actions they took. No one forced them to do so.

To justify irrational behaviour by arguing that the ban on Spring hunting is literally driving people nuts is dangerous and irresponsible. Every single person is responsible for his/her actions.

The government should make a clear statement on this issue and ban hunting for the rest of the year, and every consecutive year until those FEW hunters who flout the law realise that, like the rest of us, they are subject to the rule of law, and that might is NOT right.

Written by mickeymalta

21/04/2009 at 18:12

Ban the troglodyte sport

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Shame on the person who shot Ranger Ray Vella.

The shooters have now crossed the line. No snipers allowed.

The shooters have now crossed the line. No snipers allowed.

What is happening exactly? Are the hunters turning their guns on innocent civilians now that Spring Hunting is finally over?

I think that the government should make an example of this case and show the troglodytes that no one is intimidated by terrorists. Snipers are not welcome.

For once, it would be a good thing if the government follows the Catholic Church’s example (whenever there’s trouble around a village festa, it bans the celebration for the year) and ban hunting for the whole year.

This sniper took the saying “shooting at anything that moves” to a new low. Action needs to be taken. Fast.

Written by mickeymalta

15/04/2009 at 11:37

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