It is difficult to hide the fact that hunting has not had good press in recent years, and the public perception of this controversial passion is generally very negative. Given the accidental shootings of people, this is hardly surprising. Mistakes also involve shooting animals that are not legally permitted to be shot. Bisons are under strict protection as a “near extinction species”. However, according to the prosecutor, no crime occurred in this case.
According to the Penal Code, a crime is committed by anyone who: “causes considerable destruction in the plant or animal world“. Then it is punishable by imprisonment from six months to eight years. The problem is that in determining these “significant dimensions”, the prosecutor must rely on the opinion of experts.
Two expert opinions concluded that in this case the killing of two bisons does not constitute significant damage, because the bison population in the West Pomeranian Voivodeship is doing well and the death of two individuals is not a threat for her survival. On November 6, 2023, the prosecutor issued a decision to discontinue the proceedings.
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The bison keeper has a different opinion
For nature conservationists, this decision is highly questionable. They point out that one of the killed bisons is a so-called cow. “veneer”, that is leader of the pack. After her death, it divided into two parts. One of them wanders around the place where the former “boss” was shot and goes out onto the road. As Michał Tracz, the bison guardian, explains: it is crucial that these huge animals arrive in the forestaway from people and agricultural fields, where they cause damage and are exposed to danger themselves.
— After the death of the “face dog” there was chaos, a mess in the herd, a situation that we try to avoid. The consequence of this is that this group goes out into the fields and onto the road. As I presume, the expert who prepared the opinion and stated that the shooting of two bisons, including the leader of the herd, was “minor destruction”, he has no idea what consequences this act has for the entire herd to this day – explained Michał Tracz in a statement for TVN24.
A mistake, because it was dark and Jerusalem artichoke was growing
The circumstances of the incident seem quite surreal. The hunter targeted a wild boar, which turned out to be a bison, from a distance of approximately 60 meters. He fired six shots, but not all of them were on target. One of the stray bullets hit another bison located 400 meters away, out of the hunter’s sight.
Even though it was already dark, there was no wind or rain. Apart from that the hunter used modern weapons — a rifle with a night vision scope. The mistake was allegedly due to the terrain falling by about 1.5 meters and the bushes (Jerusalem Jerusalem artichoke) partially obscuring the view.
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This news article has been translated from the original language to English by WorldsNewsNow.com.
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