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30 September 2016
Following the public consultation that the Game and Fauna Service carried out on 5 August 2016 regarding the hunting law amendment and the regulations on captive breeding and dog training areas, BirdLife Cyprus had a meeting with the Head of Game and Fauna Service, Mr Pantelis Hadjigerou, on 31 August 2016 to discuss in detail the proposals of the Game and Fauna Service and to clarify our positions and why we oppose many of these proposed amendments. This meeting was also attended by organisations Terra Cypria and Friends of the Earth Cyprus.
29 July 2016
Following the first discussion held at the Environment Committee of the Cyprus Parliament on 29 June 2016 regarding a law amendment prepared by the Game and Fauna Service with title ‘The Protection and Management of Wild Birds and Game Species (Amendment) Law of 2016', a law amendment regarding the Law 152(I)/2003 (read relevant June 2016 article here), a second discussion was held at the Environment Committee on 13 July 2016.
30 June 2016
The consultations with the local communities over management plans for Special Protection Areas (SPAs), Natura 2000 sites for birds, have finally been completed. Between November 2014 and June 2016, BirdLife Cyprus and its project partner, I.A.CO Ltd, conducted almost 50 community consultations in local coffee shops, community and visitor centres from Sotira in the East to Neo Chorio in the West. The visits were split in two phases, with the overall aim of securing stakeholder feedback and input. During the first phase (November 2014 - March 2015), the main purpose was to inform the local communities of the aims of the 3-year project and give them a first idea of what they should expect from the management plans we were drawing up.
30 June 2016
BirdLife Cyprus expressed its serious concerns and opposition to the law amendment prepared by the Game and Fauna Service with title ‘The Protection and Management of Wild Birds and Game Species (Amendment) Law of 2016', during the recent discussion held at the Environment Committee of the Cyprus Parliament on 29 June 2016.
30 June 2016
BirdLife Cyprus completed its report with the latest findings of the on-going and systematic surveillance programme on illegal bird trapping for the autumn 2015 season. Based on the analysis of the survey data, 19km of net rides were active during the autumn season of 2015 within the survey area covering Larnaca – Famagusta and Ayios Theodoros – Maroni areas and more than 5,300 limesticks were confiscated by enforcement agencies. Based on the data gathered, BirdLife Cyprus estimated that over 2 million birds could have been killed across the whole of Cyprus in autumn 2015 from this illegal activity. These numbers confirm the industrial scale of illegal bird trapping activity on the island, both with mist nets and limesticks.
10 June 2016
The European Commission was supposed to present the results of its “fitness check” of the Birds and Habitats Directives (Nature Directives) at a Dutch Presidency conference “Future-proof Nature Policy” on 28-30 June 2016. The document was supposed to serve as a basis for discussions, about the implementation of the Nature Directives in the Member States, at the conference which many governments and NGOs were planning to attend. However the European Commission, 20 days ahead of the conference, has still not published the results of its “fitness check” of these vital laws. 
31 May 2016
In the coming weeks, the European Commission is expected to publish its conclusion on the ‘fitness check’ of the Nature Directives and hold the annual Green Week. For this reason on 16 May 2016 BirdLife Europe, the BirdLife International EU partners and citizens across the EU took to social media to remind Commissioner Vella and his 27 other Commissioner colleagues, that EU citizens are still behind the Nature Directives, and are anxious to see action, and have them fully implemented in order to benefit the environment and local communities.
31 May 2016
You might remember that back in February, we announced that six vultures were found dead in the area of Paramali / Sterakovou in Limassol all within a 3km radius. One more, the seventh, had been found dead in November 2015 in the same general area. We had hypothesized that there could be three different causes for the deaths, primary poisoning, secondary poisoning (which happens when an animal eats another animal which has been poisoned), or from eating dead animals treated with NSAIDs, which are very toxic for vultures. Since the government agencies were not in a position to determine the cause of death, finally the samples taken from the dead vultures were sent to Israel, where the Nature and Parks Authority of Israel generously offered to carry out the tests.
31 May 2016
The consultation on the new proposed EIA (Environmental Impact Assessment) legislation is soon coming to an end. The new EIA law is the result of the need to transpose into national legislation the Directive 2014/52/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council of 16 April 2014, which amends Directive 2011/92/EU on the assessment of effects of certain public and private projects on the environment. The new Directive needs to be transposed into the national legislation of all Member States by 16 May 2017, at the latest.
31 May 2016
BirdLife Cyprus welcomes the recent report by the Commissioner of Administration and Human Rights (Ombudswoman) regarding the ‘alternative plan’ for selective hunting of blackcaps, which was published on 11 April 2016 (the report is available, only in Greek, at the Ombudswoman’s website here). The report is the result of a complaint submitted by the Committee Against Bird Slaughter (CABS) and Foundation Pro Biodiversity (SPA). The complaint was against the Ministry of the Interior, and more specifically against the Game and Fauna Service, regarding the fact that the Ministry of the Interior had prepared a draft ‘Strategic Action Plan for tackling illegal bird trapping in Cyprus’, which was not in line with what had been discussed and agreed amongst all stakeholders, including the unilateral inclusion of the ‘alternative plan’.

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