One shocking story follows another this week. First we had the reports from the UK highlighting the idiots who have been attaching bird deterrent spikes along tree branches to protect their precious cars below from bird droppings - and now comes this news from Spain of a distinctly hideous event that has gone largely unreported.
The city authorities in Barcelona took the startling decision to gas nearly a thousand wild pigeons, spinelessly employing a 'specialised control company' to carry out the massacre under the supervision of the ASPB (Barcelona Public Health Authority). But a bird-loving blogger watched the despicable act and broke the shocking news to his horrified audience.
The ASPB gave the order to kill 950 birds, which must surely represent a significant percentage of Barcelona's pigeon population, as part of its plans to stage a Municipal Christmas Fair in the Plaza Catalunya, a city square ironically famous for its pigeons.
Defending its decision, the Health Authority claimed that the birds posed an 'exceptional health risk', something which has been strongly challenged by ornithological experts. In Barcelona alone, a staggering 60,000 wild pigeons are exterminated every single year.
To callously dispatch so many wild birds in this way is clearly outrageous and illustrates the contempt some people have for the wildlife around them. Murdering the birds to make way for a Christmas Fair is particularly vulgar and offensive.
When a thousand wild birds are casually gassed because they are 'in the way' of a temporary street market - and the atrocity goes unreported in the world's press - then I fear for the future of our wildlife.
Such cold-blooded cruelty is both sickening and disturbing and, alas, appears to be a growing trend.
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