North Rhine-Westphalia: Customs discovered 78 songbirds in Essen's gazebo

Essen (dpa / lnw) - In a gazebo in Essen, customs officials discovered 78 songbirds, almost half of which were no longer alive.

North Rhine-Westphalia: Customs discovered 78 songbirds in Essen's gazebo

Essen (dpa / lnw) - In a gazebo in Essen, customs officials discovered 78 songbirds, almost half of which were no longer alive. The officials came across the animals during another check, customs said on Monday. A 57-year-old from Essen had already become the focus of the authorities last summer.

41 live and 34 dead goldfinches as well as a linnet and two buntings were discovered in the gazebo last Thursday. Most of the live birds were taken to a bird sanctuary for care, according to customs. Four viable animals could have been released immediately into the wild.

According to customs, the man is being investigated for violating the Federal Nature Conservation Act. He is said to have illegally kept and sold the strictly protected goldfinches. Already in August last year, the authorities had searched the gazebo after an anonymous tip that smuggled in species-protected goldfinches were being kept and traded illegally in the allotment garden area.

At that time 57 goldfinches were discovered. To date, the man has not been able to prove that he legally owns the birds, it said. That's why there was another check.


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