Hunter kills woman


This video is about a common pheasant (Phasianus colchicus) couple.

Talking about pheasants; translated from Dutch NOS TV today:

Hunter in Slovakia shoots woman dead instead of pheasant

A hunter in Slovakia accidentally shot a 29-year-old woman instead of a pheasant. The victim had been hired as a driver to frighten the birds with her dog.

The hunter shot her in the back. The victim died in a hospital in the Slovak provincial capital Nitra. A police spokesperson says to the Slovakian news agency TASR that several hunters were present. It is still being investigated who exactly fired the deadly shot.

In Slovakia, more people have died during hunting in recent years. Experts say to local media that hunting has become a hobby of “newly rich people without experience”. …

Also, often people are said to be drunk during large hunting parties, while that is illegal.

Probably a hunter like that other hunter who did not know the difference between a fellow hunter and a lion; like Dick Cheney in the USA does not know the difference between a fellow hunter and a quail. Like another hunter does not know the difference between a hare and a female cyclist.

Dutch woman Nelleke Polderman almost killed by hunter’s bullet: here.

Beautiful birds and fungi in Australia and Slovakia


This 2016 video is called Most beautiful creature video – Wildlife, animals and bird photography. It shows birds, fungi and other wildlife, especially in Australia and Slovakia.

Pet sounds: why birds have much in common with humans. An expert on Australian native species says birds can have empathy, grieve after the death of a partner and form long-term friendships: here.

Anti-racist demonstration in Slovakia


This video says about itself:

7 March 2016

Over 1000 activists marched through Bratislava on Monday to protest against the far-right Kotleba – People’s Party Our Slovakia (LSNS), after the movement made it into the parliament in the country’s election.

Eduard Chmelar, political analyst (Slovak): “We have to protest against them. We have to explain patiently that this is road to hell. There is no other way. We cannot just distance from them and hide. We have to confront strictly against the world outlook which is mad and destructive.”

Anna Bergerova, protester whose brother was killed by Nazis during WWII (Slovak): “I wish you from bottom of my heart not to experience anything like my family and many others had to experience during fascism. Be proud of your grand parents!”

Denisa Havrlova, ethnic Roma and journalist (Slovak): “I feel deeply hurt by this. I had a hope until last moment. I believed that Slovak people will never allow this to happen. But now I think they have forgotten their history.”

Translated from Dutch NOS TV:

Slovaks protest against the extreme right

Today, 05:33

In Slovakia thousands of people have taken to the streets yesterday to protest against the far-right People’s Party Our Slovakia (LSNS). The demonstrations were in the capital Bratislava and elsewhere.

The LSNS received during the elections 8 percent of the votes, three times more than expected. The party is against refugees and Roma.

Founder and party leader Kotleba has repeatedly been sued for racism and right-wing extremism, but has not been convicted so far.

On Saturday there were elections in the country. The LSNS now have 14 seats in the parliament of 150 seats. It is the first time an extreme-right party enters the parliament.

Slovakian prime minister Robert Fico of the social democratic Smer-SD focused the entire campaign for parliamentary elections on the issue of refugees. Although only 333 asylum applications were made last year and just 8 accepted—in a country with a population of 5.4 million—Fico sought to divert attention away from the social crisis by waging a sustained propaganda campaign against refugees and Muslims. The result was a pronounced shift to the right. While Fico’s party lost its absolute majority, falling from 45 to 28 percent of the vote, a number of far-right parties, including one openly fascist organisation, passed the 5 percent hurdle and will have representation in parliament. Eight parties are now represented in parliament, making the formation of a stable government virtually impossible. There will also be consequences for the European Union (EU), since Slovakia assumes the EU presidency for six months beginning in June: here.

Dutch xenophobic arsonists convicted


This video says about itself:

Germany: ‘Anti-Nazi’ couple suffer suspected arson attack

13 August 2015

The barn of Birgit and Horst Lohmeyer, known anti-Nazi critics and activists, was set on fire in the village of Jamel in northern Germany, Thursday. The fire broke out overnight on August 12-13, with reports suggesting an unknown male was in the area at the time of the incident.

Translated from NOS TV in the Netherlands:

Tough prison sentences for throwing fire bomb into home in Velp

Today, 10:44

Three men have been convicted to 12 to 14 years in prison, because last year in Velp they have thrown a fire bomb into a house. A Slovak man and woman who were in the house were seriously injured; they got burn injuries all over their bodies.

The bomb-throwers knew that besides the Slovak couple, there were more immigrant workers in that house.

Slovakian birds, news update


This is a marsh harrier video from Belarus.

From Tomas Novak in Bratislava, Slovakia, on Twitter today:

Best sightings from yesterday: c50 White Stork, Black Stork, Red Kite, Marsh Harrier, Common Quail, Turtle Dove, Bee-eater, Black Woodpecker.

Birds of prey news from Slovakia


This is a video about a female marsh harrier, feeding on a hare which had died in Germany.

Tomas Novak, from Bratislava in Slovakia, writes on Twitter today:

7 bird of prey species spotted on Sunday: Marsh & Montagu’s Harrier, Red & Black Kite, W[hite-]T[ailed] Eagle, Buzzard, Kestrel.

Bring back the lynx, British people say


This video says about itself:

24 March 2014

With large tufted ears, a short tail and a trusting look, one could almost believe that lynxes are just big cats. In their hearts, however, they are wild and untamed. They are the tigers of Europe. This is the story of a hard earned friendship.

On the one side is Milos Majda, a quiet, nature loving ranger at the Mala Fatra national park in Slovakia. On the other side are two small lynxes, fresh from the zoo. With Milos’ help, it’s hoped the lynxes will return to the home of their ancestors in the forests of Mala Fatra in the heart of Slovakia. For two years Milos Majda and the biologist and animal filmmaker Tomas Hulik follow the journey of the lynx siblings from their warm nursery inside a cabin into the wilderness.

From Wildlife Extra:

British public vote in favour of lynx reintroduction

The majority of the British public would like to see the lynx back in the British countryside, a survey carried out by the Lynx UK Trust shows.

More than 9,000 people took part in the survey, with 91% supporting a trial reintroduction and 84% believing it should begin within the next 12 months.

Almost seven weeks ago the Lynx UK Trust, a team of international wildlife and conservation experts, announced their hopes to carry out a trial reintroduction of Eurasian lynx to the UK. Wiped out in the UK over 1,300 years ago by fur hunters, lynx have been successfully reintroduced across Europe, and the team hope that reintroduction here will provide a valuable natural control on the UK’s overpopulated deer species, leading to forest regeneration and a boost to the entire ecosystem.

“We’ve been blown away by the level of interest and support from the public.” comments chief scientific advisor to the project, Dr Paul O’Donoghue, “This is by far the biggest survey of its kind ever carried out in the UK, with almost five times the feedback of the original beaver reintroduction survey in Scotland which recorded an 86% approval rating. That led to government approval for the trial reintroduction, so we’re expecting to see a consistent response from Scottish Natural Heritage and hope for similar in England and Wales. The UK public have spoken; people overwhelmingly want these animals to be given the chance to come back and we’ve got an extremely capable team to deliver it.

“Lynx have proven themselves across Europe to be absolutely harmless to humans and of very little threat to livestock, whilst bringing huge benefit to rural economies and the natural ecology, including species like capercaillie which face some serious problems in the UK. It’s wonderful that the general public want to see lynx given the chance to do the same here.”

Encouragingly, over half of the people who filled in the survey were from rural communities, returning a level of support only 5-6% lower than urban communities, showing that this project has considerable support from people who live and work in the UK countryside.

Applications to Natural England and Scottish Natural Heritage are expected to be completed by summer for sites in Norfolk, Cumbria, Northumberland and Aberdeenshire, with the Trust still evaluating potential release sites in Wales. Up to six lynx would be released at each site and closely monitored via satellite collars over a trial period likely to last for 3-5 years.

Wild lynx returning to Britain after 1,300 years


This video says about itself:

24 March 2014

With large tufted ears, a short tail and a trusting look, one could almost believe that lynxes are just big cats. In their hearts, however, they are wild and untamed. They are the tigers of Europe. This is the story of a hard earned friendship. On the one side is Milos Majda, a quiet, nature loving ranger at the Mala Fatra national park in Slovakia.

On the other side are two small lynxes, fresh from the zoo. With Milos’ help, it’s hoped the lynxes will return to the home of their ancestors in the forests of Mala Fatra in the heart of Slovakia. For two years Milos Majda and the biologist and animal filmmaker Tomas Hulik follow the journey of the lynx siblings from their warm nursery inside a cabin into the wilderness.

From the Daily Telegraph in Britain:

Wild lynx to return to Britain after 1,300 years

In one of the most ambitious ‘rewilding’ projects ever to take place in the UK, the large deer-eating felines could be introduced to three unfenced estates later this year

By Camilla Turner

7:32PM GMT 08 Mar 2015

Known as the Keeper of Secrets, the elusive forest-dwelling creature has been extinct in Britain for over 1,300 years.

But now the wild lynx could roam the woods of England and Scotland once again, as part of the most ambitious “rewilding” project ever attempted in the UK.

If the Lynx UK Trust’s scheme is approved, the large cats, which prey on deer as well as rabbit and hare, will be released onto three privately owned, unfenced estates in Norfolk, Cumbria and Aberdeenshire.

“The lynx is one of the most enigmatic, beautiful cats on the planet,” Dr Paul O’Donoghue, a scientific adviser to the trust said. “The British countryside is dying and lynx will bring it back to life.”

The Eurasian lynx is the largest lynx species, with powerful, long legs, with large webbed and furred paws. Due to its solitary and secretive nature, lynx does not present a threat to humans.

The trust has launched a public consultation to determine public reaction to the plan, after which it will lodge a formal application with Natural England and Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH), the government agencies that license such releases.

If the plan is given the green light, four to six Eurasian lynx wearing GPS tracking collars would be released later this year at each of the sites, all of which are rich in deer and tree cover.

One of the chosen sites is near Norfolk’s Thetford Forest, one of England’s largest and wildest woodlands and the other is in Ennerdale, a remote Lake District valley.

Lynx could help control Britain’s population of more than one million wild deer, which lack natural predators. Deer damage woodland by overgrazing and eat the eggs of birds that nest on the ground or in low bushes.

Peter Watson of the Deer Initiative which campaigns for the controlling deer in a sustainable way, welcomed the experimental reintroduction of lynx, saying that introducing lynx could help solve this problem.

Tony Marmont, a businessman who owns Grumack Forest, near Huntly in Aberdeenshire, told the Sunday Times that lynx will have an “extremely beneficial effect” on forest ecosystems. He added that lynx would serve as “ambassadors for wider conservation projects”.

However, not everyone is as enthusiastic, as the economic impact of reintroducing large predators remains controversial.

Previous reintroduction plans have been opposed and sometimes blocked by farmers arguing that creatures such as lynx and birds of prey attack livestock and gamebirds. …

In Germany, 14 lynx were reintroduced to a site in the Harz mountains in 2000 and have since bred and colonised other areas. Another reintroduction, in Switzerland in the 1990s, has also seen animals breed and spread.

Bird news from Slovakia


This 2014 video is called Displaying of Great Bustard in Austria.

From Tomas Novak in Bratislava, Slovakia, today on Twitter:

Today’s best: 12 G[rea]t Bustard, 4 Cr[ested] Lark, c15 Linnet, Hen Harrier, c20 Meadow Pipit, Kingfisher, 2 Smew, 2 Goosander

European wolf, bear, lynx news


This video says about itself:

Link with the Lynx – The Secrets of Nature

24 March 2014

With large tufted ears, a short tail and a trusting look, one could almost believe that lynxes are just big cats. In their hearts, however, they are wild and untamed. They are the tigers of Europe. This is the story of a hard earned friendship. On the one side is Milos Majda, a quiet, nature loving ranger at the Mala Fatra national park in Slovakia. On the other side are two small lynxes, fresh from the zoo. With Milos’ help, it’s hoped the lynxes will return to the home of their ancestors in the forests of Mala Fatra in the heart of Slovakia. For two years Milos Majda and the biologist and animal filmmaker Tomas Hulik follow the journey of the lynx siblings from their warm nursery inside a cabin into the wilderness.

From daily The Guardian in Britain:

Brown bears, wolves and lynx numbers rising in Europe

Land-sharing model of conservation is helping large predators thrive in the wild – and even the British countryside could support big carnivores, study finds

The forests – and suburbs – of Europe are echoing with the growls, howls and silent padding of large predators according to a new study which shows that brown bears, wolves and lynx are thriving on a crowded continent.

Despite fears that large carnivores are doomed to extinction because of rising human populations and overconsumption, a study published in Science has found that large predator populations are stable or rising in Europe.

Brown bear, wolf, the Eurasian lynx and wolverine are found in nearly one-third of mainland Europe (excluding Belarus, Ukraine, and Russia), with most individuals living outside nature reserves, indicating that changing attitudes and landscape-scale conservation measures are successfully protecting species which have suffered massive persecution throughout human history.

The bears are the most abundant large carnivore in Europe with around 17,000 individuals, alongside 12,000 wolves, 9,000 Eurasian lynx and 1,250 wolverines, which are restricted to northern parts of Scandinavia and Finland.

Only Belgium, Denmark, the Netherlands and Luxembourg in mainland Europe – like Britain – have no breeding populations of at least one large carnivore species. But the paper’s lead author and other conservationists said these animals’ surprising distribution across well-populated regions of Europe showed that even the British countryside could support big predators.

Guillaume Chapron from Sweden’s University of Agricultural Sciences and researchers across Europe found wolves in some cases living in suburban areas alongside up to 3,050 people per square kilometre – higher than the population density of Cambridge or Newcastle.

On average in Europe, wolves live on land with a population density of 37 people per sq km, lynx in areas with a population density of 21 people per sq km and bears among 19 people per sq km. The population density of the Scottish Highlands is nine people per sq km.

“In order to have wolves we don’t need to remove people from the landscape,” said Chapron.

According to Chapron and his colleagues, the big carnivore revival shows the success of a “land-sharing” model of conservation – in stark contrast to keeping predators and people apart by fencing off “wilderness” areas as occurs in North America and Africa.

“I’m not saying it’s a peace and love story – coexistence often means conflict – but it’s important to manage that conflict, keep it at a low level and resolve the problems it causes. Wolves can be difficult neighbours,” said Chapron. “We shouldn’t be talking about people-predator conflict; we have conflict between people about predators. These animals are symbolic of difficult questions about how we should use the land.”

According to the researchers, this “land-sharing” approach could be applied elsewhere in the world.

The reasons for its success in Europe include political stability, burgeoning populations of prey species such as wild deer, and financial support for non-lethal livestock protection such as electric fences, which mean that farmers do not resort to shooting wild predators. Most crucial, said Chapron, has been the EU habitats directive which has compelled member states to protect and revive rare species.

“Without the habitats directive I don’t think we would have had this recovery,” he said. “It shows if people are willing to protect nature and that political will is translated into strong legislation like the habitats directive, it’s possible to achieve results in wildlife protection.”

The revival was welcomed by author and commentator George Monbiot, who is next year launching Rewilding Britain, a new charity to encourage the return of wild landscape and extinct species.

“It is great to see the upward trend continuing but Britain is completely anomalous – we’ve lost more of our large mammals than any country except for Ireland,” he said. “Apart from the accidental reintroduction of boar we’ve done almost nothing whereas in much of the rest of Europe we’ve got bears, lynx and wolves coming back. It’s a massive turnaround from the centuries of persecution.”

The survey found the Eurasian lynx living permanently in 11 population groups across 23 European countries, of which only five were native populations – indicating the success of reintroduction efforts. According to Monbiot, momentum is building for the reintroduction of the lynx into the Cairngorms in Scotland.

“If it works in the rest of Europe, there’s absolutely no reason why it can’t work in the UK,” he said, pointing out that bears and wolves are found within an hour of Rome. “There’s no demographic reason why we can’t have a similar return of wildlife in the UK.”

An extensive European study has found that the numbers of carnivorous animals are on the rise across the continent, with Sweden seeing a hike in the populations of bears, lynxes, wolves, and wolverines: here.