The World Wildlife Fund claims that it will be filing charges against German officials since they killed a wild bison. The animal is believed to be the first of its kind spotted in the country in more than two and a half centuries.
The Local reported that the bison was spotted by a man near the Oder River just east of Berlin, and the local officials deemed it a threat to community safety, so they and ordered it to be killed.
According to Chris Heinrich, a WWF board member:
“Giving permission to shoot a strongly protected animal without a clear potential threat is a criminal offence. After more than 250 years a wild bison had been spotted again in Germany and all the authorities could think to do is shoot it.”
According to the website of WWF, the “species-specific behaviour of [bison] is not a threat to humans”, and there have been “successful projects with wild-living [bison] both in Poland and now in Germany”.
“The shooting is unfortunately also an expression of the helplessness of the authorities, how they should deal with wild animals. There is a lack of professional trained staff in the area.”
According to The Independent:
“The IUCN says the bison was once widely found throughout western, central and southeastern Europe, but by the end of the 19th century, only two populations of the bison survived in the Białowieża Forest and the western Caucasus mountains.
The animal was later deemed extinct in the wild by 1927, though conservation efforts have reintroduced the species to countries including Poland, Lithuania, Belarus, Ukraine, Russia and Slovakia. Captive populations of the European bison can be found in 30 countries worldwide, the IUCN says.”
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