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Hunter shoots flying pet parrot in Belgium "for fun"

Rejected submission by dwilson at 2019-01-05 16:54:40 from the responsible-hunters-outraged dept.

An exotic parrot was killed by a hunter in Belgium [] on Dec. 29th while out for an afternoon flight with it's owner and another bird.

From the article:

Owner Joseph Verdyck was helpless as he watched his beloved pet being blasted in the sky before falling down and getting eaten by hunting dogs. Joseph, from Westmalle in Belgium, had taken pets Rambo and Mera, who he raised after hatching them from eggs, and even taught them to fly, out to a field. Joseph was however unaware that hunters were in the area, and within minutes, one of them took aim at Rambo and blasted him from the sky. He then saw to his horror how the hunting dogs, owned by the men, immediately ran towards the parrot and savaged the poor bird in front of his eyes.

The Metro article is a bit light on details, but more information is available from Dutch-speaking [] sources [] (Warning: First link contains disturbing image). Some details available in the dutch-language articles show that the owner had been flying birds in this particular field for years with the permission of the land owner, the bird was wearing a bright red harness (both showing that it wasn't a 'wild' bird, and a colour that stands out at a distance against the blue and yellow colouring of the bird), and that both the owner and the bird are somewhat well-known in bird-circles in Belgium and Europe, both for the level of training and the ability the bird displayed. No word on whether the hunters had permission to hunt there or if they were regulars in the area.

As both a gun-owner and a parrot owner, this story was heart-breaking and infuriating. These birds have a lifespan comparable to humans (they aren't considered 'adult' birds until they go through puberty at around ten-to-twelve years of age), and an intelligence and personality equivalent to a one-to-two year old human child. They are more than just pets.

Rambo was less than four years in to his expected ~eighty year lifespan.

Original Submission