Page 3 Profile: Chris Packham, Naturalist and TV Presenter


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The Independent Online

So Chris Packham’s Maltese mission came to an abrupt halt?

He ran into trouble when trying to film the illegal hunting of migrating birds on the island. The FKNK, the hunter’s federation on Malta, reported him for defamation and he was called in for questioning by police. The FKNK have also asked police to investigative claims he broke data-protection laws.

It sounds like the FKNK are really going after him

Perhaps, but he doesn’t seem particularly fazed by dangerous scenarios. Before he travelled out to the island, he said: “I don’t care if I get shot. If that’s the cost of getting the message across that birds we expect to see in our gardens are dead in some Maltese field because of this senseless slaughter, I’m willing to pay the price.”

So what came out of the ordeal?

After the questioning Packham said: “The police seemed to me to be keen to develop a more co-operative working relationship with NGOs such as BirdLife Malta and the Committee Against Bird Slaughter. If that happens as a result of this questioning, then it will be a good outcome as it will lead to more successful prosecutions of illegal hunting activities.”

Why Malta, anyway?

It lies on one of three migration highways between Europe and Africa and is the only EU country to have a recreational spring hunting season, when birds can be shot.