GOZO – A year-long collaborative investigation by The Shift and environmental journalist Thomas Krumenacker has established a pattern of vote-buying politics favouring the Maltese hunting lobby and directly leading to the degradation of endangered and at-risk bird species hunted in Malta both legally and illegally.

Bird hunting in Malta is described as a “way of life” by those who practice it, despite causing the deaths of birds which impact a swathe of other countries. 

The tradition, considered an "endowment from god" by its proponents, indiscriminately tarnishes bird populations across Europe with environmentalists saying it “wastes away” costly and time-intensive conservation efforts undertaken by other EU member states (German state officials who spoke to The Shift’s partners estimated that for just a single bird species, conservation efforts cost €500,000 per year.)

Hundreds of thousands of euro invested annually by EU members such as Germany into the conservation of various bird species are squandered to appease the circa 10,000 hunters who annually apply for seasonal hunting licenses.

Photo credit: Thomas Krumenacker

Team members

Thomas Krumenacker

Thomas Krumenacker is Berlin-based journalist, ornithologist and photographer. 

Thomas Krumenacker

Sean Montebello

Sean Montebello is a Maltese investigative journalist. He works for The Shift.

Sean Montebello

The Shift

Online news platform focused on investigative journalism and committed to good governance, European liberal values, social inclusion and environmental protection.

The Shift
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