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Man fined €22,400 for possession of banned game, trapping equipment

A bird stuck on a limestick, which is used by trappers to catch ambelopoulia

A 63-year-old man from Nicosia was slapped with a €22,400 fine after police found a large number of dead birds and trapping equipment at his home.

Police said the game was found during a raid of his house in the district of Nicosia at 6.30am on Friday. Officers found a large number of songbirds, partridges, and bee eaters, as well as equipment used for trapping.

Police said they found 68 songbirds, seven partridges, and two bee eaters. Officers also seized four traps used to hunt hares, 21 bird traps, and 205 limesticks and a net used for trapping birds. Two bird sound machines used a decoys were also found.

The man was arrested and taken to Latsia police station where he was issued with a €22,400 fine before he was released.

Songbirds, or ambelopoulia as they are known in Cyprus, are considered a local delicacy and a dozen can go for up to €80. Despite strict regulations, restaurants mainly in the Famagusta district and in the Ayios Theodoros area of Larnaca, still serve them.

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