Wednesday 22 November 2023 | 27

Hunting birds by crushing them under a stone: is it the end for stone traps?

Hunting birds by crushing them under a stone: is it the end for stone traps?

Mis à jour le 26 March 2024

If there is one thing that characterises hunters, it is their ability to come up with yet more cruel ways of killing animals. Under the cover of ‘tradition’, they use techniques each more violent than the next that cause intense suffering for field larks, thrushes, lapwings, and all other bird species used as targets here. Our fight against these practices from a bygone era is moving forward: on 23 November 2023 at 9:30am, the State Council will decide on our request to definitely annul the use of s tone traps in Aveyron and Lozère.

Hr blog

Update from 21 December 2023:

It is done! The State Council has just joined the government in definitely revoking the decree authorising the use of stone traps. They do not deem this type of bird hunting as selective, as we had told them. Logical, since the birds were enticed by bait and then killed by being crushed beneath a stone.

Like glue hunting, stone traps will now be nothing but a distant memory for birds. In the months to come, we will continue the fight against this type of traditional hunting coming into force by asking the State Council to once and for all prohibit the repeal of decrees allowing the use of cages and nets in the South-West.

Updated 23 November:

The conclusions by the public reporter were very clear: the decree is illegal both due to the lack of selectivity of the practice and because of the lack of justification that any satisfactory alternative exists. She also questioned the fact that the ministry characterises stone traps as a ‘non-lethal’ trapping method. Obviously - who would believe that a large stone falling on a small bird will kill it? Fools that we are... The decision must be given within two to three weeks.

After glue, cages, nets, and decoys, the moment of truth has come for stone traps

For thrushes in Lozère and Aveyron, stone traps are synonymous with suffering and death. They are small bird traps that spring into action when the bird touches the bait: a stone then falls on it, giving it no chance. When the bird is not killed instantly, it suffers fractures which will condemn it and stop it from flying away. The trapper can then come and get it to finish it off, most often by hand.

Since 2018, we have been leading a relentless fight against all of these types of hunting. While stone traps in Ardennes and glue in the south-west have definitively been banned by the State Council and the decrees authorising cages and nets have been urgently suspended, judges have not yet ruled on stone traps. Beyond their barbaric character, this practice is clearly illegal, as we have been saying for years.

To what point will the government support traditional hunting against birds?

So why continue to persist in authorising these sadistic tools that concern only a handful of people but cause so much suffering to birds? Defending traditions is easy to blame! In reality, it is nothing more or less than satisfying the demands of a lobby. And it is an understatement to say that the current government is giving crazy amounts of energy to protecting this minority who take pleasure in killing.

Under the cover of ‘scientific experimentation’, they also recently allowed the capture of several thousand birds with nets, cages, and stone traps, which is in fact frowned upon by the State Council! Our pleas allowed the suspension of three of the five decrees and it is a safe bet that the government will try its luck again next year in the event that the decrees authorising cages and nets are not definitively cancelled by the State Council by then.

But if the legal system sticks to its consistent position, we are hopeful that stone traps, like trapping and glue hunting, will soon be nothing more than a distant memory for animals. And if,like 70% of French people, you believe that hunting is a cruel practice, sign our petition for a radical reform of it!

Translated from the French by Joely Justice

Maxime Lambret
Hr blog

In the subject

Melles: the hunting season for goats is open! Underground hunting with hounds: are we moving towards a cancellation in Manche and Orne following the suspension? New hearings for badgers

Comments 27

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Lili | Saturday 20 January 2024


Isaline | Monday 18 December 2023

Incroyable de lire toutes ces horreurs, ces chasseurs sont des monstres !!
Pauvres petits oiseaux si fragiles.
Pourquoi leur infliger cela ? C'est tout simplement ignoble et cruel.
Je ne sais pas ce que certains humains ont dans la peau pour faire de telles horreurs.

Franny | Thursday 30 November 2023

J'ignorais tous les moyens cruels dont dispose l'humain pour simplement tuer dans la plus grande barbarie des êtres aussi fragiles, gracieux et qui ne demandent qu'à vivre. Les oiseaux sont beaux quand nous sommes laids et nous croyons supérieurs à eux. Nous avons tout à apprendre d'eux et plus rien de nous-mêmes. C'est d'ailleurs le constat qu'en faisait déjà Mark Twain au siècle dernier dans "Cette maudite race humaine". L'homme est le seul animal sur terre à tuer par plaisir. J'adore ces petits êtres si fragiles et espère de tout cœur que ces pratiques d'un autre âge ne seront plus qu'un triste souvenir sous peu. Quant aux dites traditions, ça se change !!!

Angie | Wednesday 29 November 2023

Les hommes des cavernes devaient être moins cruels. Toutes ces chasses,"traditionnelles" doivent être interdites définitivement. C'est une urgence pour la biodiversité.