Tuesday, 4 September 2012

An amazing picture...

... not for the Cyprus Wheatear, but for the sign it's standing on.  In the entire trip, I think this was the only "Hunting is Prohibited" sign I saw that wasn't shot to pieces for target practice.

I knew Cyprus was well known for it's "enthusiastic" attitude to shooting, but having chosen to go birding early one Sunday morning to Evretou Reservoir, I soon realised I'd entered a warzone. Camo' clad, shotgun wielding, hunters lined the main road from Polis and were sat patiently behind almost every bush in the hills around the reservoir, waiting for something, anything, to move. On parking the car and turning off the engine, the constant roar from the guns was astonishing and, at one point, I actually heard the sound of metal on metal, as spent shot fell from the sky onto the car roof.

I was genuinely shocked, and came home both upset and angered, wondering how anything at all manages to survive in this part of the island.

These images were taken on a "less dangerous" day around Theletra, where I plucked up the courage to set foot outside the vehicle.

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