During migration seasons in the spring and autumn, migrating birds often cause harm to various crops. Farmers who have experienced this can apply for compensation from the Environmental Protection Board for damage caused by species that are not hunted, including geese, cranes, sea eagles and the like.
The board has already received its first applications and reminds farmers that they should apply for compensation as soon as possible after noticing the damage so that experts can examine the situation and make decisions as to whether compensation is appropriate and, if so, how much compensation there should be.
“Last year, winter wheat suffered the most damage, with 47% of applications relating to it, followed by beans at 27% and peas, oats, summer barley and rapeseed. 82% of the damage was caused by geese, followed by swans and cranes,” the board reports.
Compensation is also available for fisheries that have suffered damage caused by fish-eating birds and otters. The same applies to beekeepers who have found that bears have been naughty in relation to hives. To get compensation, the applicant must show that he or she has taken steps to prevent damage, including visual or acoustic scarecrows. Experts say that geese and swans gather in large groups before setting off for arduous migratory flights. They occasionally land to rest, feed themselves and survive bad weather conditions. Migration to places where birds spend the winter requires enormous amounts of energy, and the places where they stop are of great importance if they are to continue the flight. Migrating birds particularly enjoy farmland, where food is more easily available at a time when natural feeding and rest areas are in shorter supply.
Source: Environmental Protection Board