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11 October 2021 Persecution of Birds of Prey in Flanders: A Retrospective Study 2011–19
An Garmyn, Lieze Rouffaer, Tom Roggeman, Marc Verlinden, Katleen Hermans, Marleen Cools, Mark Van den Meersschaut, Siska Croubels, An Martel
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Abstract

For decades birds of prey have been under the protection of European law, but deliberate or unintentional killing is still a large-scale problem in Europe. In an effort to monitor illegal practices, the Flemish government established several bird of prey hotlines in 2006. Since then, every suspicious death of a bird of prey has been investigated. This retrospective study reviews the necropsy results of every bird of prey submitted for investigation from January 2011 to December 2019, with a focus on illegal practices. In 36.7% (83/226) of all necropsy cases, an illegal cause of death was found, with poisoning being demonstrated in 88% (73/83) of these cases. Cholinesterase inhibitors were the most commonly used toxins, despite being prohibited in Europe. With a prevalence of 82.5% (260/315) of all cases, the Common Buzzard (Buteo buteo) was the species most submitted for necropsy.

© Wildlife Disease Association 2021
An Garmyn, Lieze Rouffaer, Tom Roggeman, Marc Verlinden, Katleen Hermans, Marleen Cools, Mark Van den Meersschaut, Siska Croubels, and An Martel "Persecution of Birds of Prey in Flanders: A Retrospective Study 2011–19," Journal of Wildlife Diseases 57(4), 922-926, (11 October 2021). https://doi.org/10.7589/JWD-D-20-00191
Received: 5 November 2020; Accepted: 22 April 2021; Published: 11 October 2021
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