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8 Autumn Hunting Illegalities To Watch Out For In Malta

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The autumn hunting season is open, meaning some 10,000 licensed hunters will be able to hunt for 40 species of birds from now until the end of January. However, it is not a free-for-all, and hunters will have to abide by the law or risk facing the consequences.

This is what will not be allowed throughout the hunting season.

1. No hunting at night

Hunting is allowed from Monday to Saturday from two hours before sunrise to two hours after sunset. Anyone carrying a gun outdoors outside those hours is breaking the law.

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2. Hunting ends early on Sundays and public holidays

To allow people to enjoy the countryside without disturbance on Sundays and public holidays, hunting is only allowed from two hours before sunrise until 1pm on those days.

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3. No hunting near main beaches

It is illegal to hunt within 50 metres of the main beaches in Malta and Gozo – namely Armier, Anchor Bay, Għajn Tuffieħa, Paradise Bay, Ġnejna Bay, Golden Bay, Mġarr ix-Xini, Ramla l-Ħamra, San Blas, Xatt l-Aħmar, and Xlendi Bay.

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4. No hunting in residential areas

Hunting is not allowed within 200 metres of residential areas, defined as areas in which more than 100 people live. It is also illegal to hunt within 50m of a main road.

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5. No kids allowed

Hunting licenses are only given to people over 18 years old. If you see a younger person out hunting, report it.

6. No hunting in bird sanctuaries

Hunting is illegal in bird sanctuaries such as Għadira, Comino, Buskett, Simar, Ta’ Qali, Girgenti, Ta’ Ċenċ and within 200 metres of the airport. A full list of sanctuaries is available on BirdLife Malta’s website.

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The Ghadira bird sanctuary

7. Keep these dates handy

Between 15 September and 7 October, hunting closes earlier at 7pm as it is the season when birds of prey tend to land in Malta. Turtle doves, which can no longer be hunted in spring as they are a vulnerable species, can still be hunted in autumn… but only until 30 September.

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8. Trapping is not yet allowed

The trapping season for finch, song thrush and golden plover is closed until 20 October, and any cage traps and nets seen before that date should be reported. The use of electronic bird callers, for hunting and trapping, is illegal throughout the year.

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Photo: MaltaToday

Featured Photo courtesy of Times of Malta

Any hunting illegalities should be reported to the police on 119, and then to BirdLife on 21347644/6 or 79255697.

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Tim is interested in the rapid evolution of human society brought about by technological advances. He’s passionate about justice, human rights and cutting-edge political debates. You can follow him on Twitter at @timdiacono or reach out to him at [email protected]

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