Poacher shoots wild birds at Thane lake in broad daylight

Mar 11, 2017, 08:30 IST | A Correspondent

A local resident spotted the unidentified hunter shooting from a boat; cops found a pellet gun stashed at the watchman’s cabin

The pellet gun was found in the cabin of the watchman who monitors the lake (right) metal pellets were recovered from the bodies of the dead birds
The pellet gun was found in the cabin of the watchman who monitors the lake (right) metal pellets were recovered from the bodies of the dead birds

Poachers seem to be stepping out of the shadows and are now brazenly hunting wildlife in broad daylight. The Thane forest department and police force are on the hunt for a hunter who shot down at least two Indian Cormorants at Ambe Ghosle lake in Thane west yesterday.

A local resident who lives near the artificial lake spotted the accused in a boat, shooting the birds resting on the lake’s shore. The alert citizen immediately informed animal welfare activists and the local police station, but by the time cops got there, the suspect had already fled.

The police did find the bodies of the birds, as well as the alleged weapon – a pellet gun, shockingly left behind in the cabin of the watchman who monitors the lake. The watchman claims he has no idea who kept the gun there. The bodies will be sent to the Bombay Veterinary College for post-mortem. The police and the Territorial Department of Thane Forest Department have started investigations and are looking for the poacher.

“Hunting of wildlife is prohibited under Section 9 of the Wildlife Protection Act, 1972. There are many reports of birds being poached from artificial water bodies as well as lakes and mangroves. The main reason is the high demand of such meat in local markets, where the meat of different wild birds is easily available. Hunting with slings was common earlier, but these days, hunting with pellet guns has become common. Last month, two flamingos were found with pellet wounds,” said Pawan Sharma from the NGO RAWW.

Official speak
IS Kambli, range forest officer from the Thane Territorial Range said, “The Rabodi police station has registered a case and is investigating into the matter. The metal pellets have been recovered from the body of the two birds that were found dead near the lake. The search is on for the person who killed the birds.”

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