Protect China’s Wild Birds

Encountering trapped birds in illegal mist nets can be distressing. It is estimated that over a million birds are killed in this way every autumn along China’s east coast.

The illegal trapping and shooting of wild birds is widespread in China.  However, there is a small and growing number of activists who are dedicated to stopping this illegal and cruel practice.  By using social media to publicise disturbing cases and, importantly, risking the wrath of the criminals including threats to their personal safety by taking direct action to take down illegal nets, these individuals are leading the fight to stamp out the unnecessary and cruel practice of killing wild birds.

Shi Jin, a Beijing-based birder, has set up a dedicated webpage to publicise this issue and to encourage comments of support from birders and conservationists all over the world for those dedicated few who are trying to eradicate this activity, often against the grain of their cultural heritage.

Comments really do make a difference: they encourage not only the activists but also those who care about China’s international reputation, and already we have seen thousands of ordinary netizens expressing their outrage at the cases submitted to the website.

Please take a look at the webpage and, if you have a minute or two, add a comment of support.  The comments generated through this website are publicised via the Chinese ‘Twitter’, called “Weibo”, whose membership includes over 500 million people.  You can be sure that your comment will make a difference.  Thank you.

3 thoughts on “Protect China’s Wild Birds”

  1. When I flew into Beijing a few weeks ago dozens and dozens of mist nets lined at least 1 side of a runway that borded onto some trees and shrubs. I guess to try and prevent bird strikes. There were also several runs along the open grass between the runways. I bet this kills lots of birds!!

    1. Hi Adrian. Yes, it’s distressing.. I have discussed this with the Beijing Birdwatching Society and encouraged them to approach the airport about this… it’s a terrible welcome to Beijing for birders and, of course, almost certainly unnecessarily kills hundreds, if not thousands, of birds every year. With alternative bird scaring methods available, there is no place for this outdated practice at the main airport of a major global economy.

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