This post was send by Mate Zec of BirdLife Croatia
At the beginning of January 2017 at the Nin salt pans in Croatia, the illegal killing of shelducks (Tadorna tadorna), a strictly protected species, was reported to the police and nature protection inspectors.
At least 12 killed individuals were found, but the total number of birds killed could be higher. In Croatia, the shelduck is a strictly protected species according to the Ordinance on strictly protected species (Official Gazette 144/13) and is not a game species (Hunting act, OG 67/16), which means that hunting or disturbing this species in any way is prohibited by law.
The area is part of the Natura 2000 SPA network, and the salt pans are extremely important for establishing and preserving a favourable conservation status for wild birds in the area. The shelduck is a rare migrant and wintering bird, and the first breeding pair of this species in Croatia, along with around 20 non-breeding individuals, was recorded at the Dinjiška salt pans on the island of Pag in the spring of 2016.
Considering that the Mediterranean population of this species does not migrate, and that the Dinjiška and Nin salt pans are only 10 km apart, it is very likely that the killed birds were a significant part of Croatia’s tiny population of shelducks.
Source: BirdLife Croatia