26 flamingos caught for sale die in bus trunk
AKSARAY - Demirören News Agency
Caught in Lake Tuz, 26 flamingos have died in a bus trunk where they had been put on their way to be sold by three suspects enroute to the southern province of Mersin.
Naim D., 36, residing in the Central Anatolian province of Aksaray’s Eskil district, caught 47 flamingos, 40 of which were flaminglets, in the lake with the help of his two friends.
Following that he tied the feet and beaks of the flamingos, the suspect sent them to Mersin’s Erdemli district in boxes in a bus trunk to be sold.
The boxes were lowered from the bus to the side of the road in front of a shopping center in Erdemli.
Upon the notification of the people around who heard the sounds coming from the boxes, the police were informed and notified the Nature Conservation and National Parks (DKMP).
Including four adults, 26 flamingos were out of breath and died at the bus while the others were released back to nature in Mersin’s Silifke district.
Naim D. and the bus driver were fined 300,000 Turkish Liras ($16,300) and legal proceedings were initiated against them.
Meanwhile, in the operation carried out against two other suspects by the gendarmerie, ruddy shelducks and sheldrakes, which are illegal to own, and flamingo wings were seized.
While the judicial investigation continues against the suspects who were released after their testimonies, DKMP issued 125,000 liras ($6,700) fine for the birds seized in the house.
Lake Tuz, Türkiye’s second-largest lake in Central Anatolia, has shrunk by 30 percent since the 1930s, and experts warned that the lake could disappear in 30 years if necessary measures were not taken.
Following the warnings, the Environment, Urbanization and Climate Change Ministry started a project last year to save the lake, which is the only natural nesting ground for flamingos in Türkiye.