Hundreds of cormorant chicks killed in attack in eastern Sweden

Cormorants close to the shore. (Camilla Körkander/Sveriges Radio)
Cormorants close to the shore. (Camilla Körkander/Sveriges Radio)
Hundreds of cormorant chicks may have been killed in an attack on two islands close to the Swedish town of Gävle.

An unknown number of people are thought to have gone to the islands, and as well as killing the birds also chopped down 200 to 300 trees that the birds used to nest in, and also tried to set the islands alight, Swedish Radio News in Gävle reports.

Police say the acts constitute one of the largest ever environmental crimes in the area, and took place in May this year.

“The destruction is widespread”, Henrik Forssblad from the local police says, “there are estimates that up to a thousand chicks were killed, we can say with certainty that several hundred were definitely killed.”

He adds that it is strange that so few people have come forward to report the crimes: “We can only guess as to why it is so quiet. But of course there are people that have a negative image of cormorants and think you can take the law into your own hands because they don’t like this particular legislation.”

The islands were two of the largest breeding grounds for cormorants in Gävle county.

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Radio Sweden

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