Did you know that wildlife poisoning was not treated as a crime in Albania until 2019? A new video sheds light on the different aspects relating to wildlife poisoning in Albania, taking a look at the past and present.
The Albanian Ornithological Society (AOS) created the video within the framework of the Balkan Anti-Poisoning Project (BAPP) – Small Grants Programme, led by the Vulture Conservation Foundation (VCF) and funded by the MAVA Foundation. The video aims to inform the public on the issue of wildlife poisoning in Albania as well as to raise awareness and promote institutional and public response to this phenomenon.
Taking a close look at wildlife poisoning in Albania through the years
The video describes how the situation regarding wildlife poisoning issues has changed over the years, focusing on three different time periods: before 1990, after 1990, and the period from 2018 up to today, which also represents the period when some of the most important steps taken to combat this phenomenon in Albania. As of 2019, the use of poisonous substances or poison baits in the environment to capture or kill animals became a wildlife crime in Albania and is prohibited by law.
Working to combat illegal wildlife poisoning in Albania
AOS, with the support of multiple partners and various conservation projects, has worked closely on this issue, tackling illegal wildlife poisoning in Albania in recent years. These efforts, together with some of the achievements and challenges they have been facing so far, are reflected in the video. Within our BalkanDetox LIFE project, AOS continues to tackle the threat of wildlife poisoning head-on, working with several stakeholders to build national capacities and raise awareness about the problem.
The Balkan Anti-Poisoning Project Small Grants Programme
The Balkan Anti-Poisoning Project Small Grants Programme is the first time the VCF have run a grant programme, and with this, they aimed to reinforce national capacities within relevant governmental authorities and conservation NGOs from six countries (Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Greece, North Macedonia and Serbia) of the Balkan Peninsula. This work will support those organisations to improve their skills and capabilities in the detection and mitigation of poisoning incidents through the implementation of previously developed National Roadmaps and Strategies. More specifically, through these small grants, we endeavour to secure the implementation of priority anti-poisoning actions listed in the National Anti-Poisoning Road-maps/Strategies, strengthen the capacities of relevant national governmental institutions in combating the illegal use of poison baits, improve the enforcement of relevant legislation and attract other funding opportunities for implementation of large-scale anti-poisoning projects in the region. Through the support of the MAVA Foundation, the VCF managed to dedicate a budget of €60.000 for these small grants.
Balkan Anti-Poisoning Project
The Balkan Anti-Poisoning Project (BAPP) was a cross-border initiative bringing together wildlife conservation organisations, governmental agencies and other stakeholders such as hunting associations, farmers and scientists in six Balkan countries to tackle illegal wildlife poisoning.
Funded by the MAVA Foundation, BAPP aimed to secure real and continued engagement of the relevant national governmental authorities in the Balkan region against illegal wildlife poisoning and increase their capacity to counteract it and work together to take positive steps to protect vultures.
The Balkan Anti-Poisoning Project was a partnership led by the Vulture Conservation Foundation in collaboration with the Albanian Ornithological Society-AOS, Protection and Preservation of Natural Environment in Albania-PPNEA, Ornithological Society “Naše ptice”,Association BIOM, Hellenic Ornithological Society-HOS, Macedonian Ecological Society-MES, Društvo za zaštitu i proučavanje ptica Srbije.
The Balkan Anti-Poisoning Project also contributed directly to the implementation of the Vulture Multi-Species Action Plan by carrying out anti-poisoning actions in Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Greece, North Macedonia and Serbia, and is building on the work over the last decade in the Balkans through the Balkan Vulture Action Plan.
The BAPP also established the foundations for the new LIFE-funded BalkanDetox LIFE project, which strengthens national capacities to fight wildlife poisoning and raises awareness about the problem across seven Balkan countries.