An investigation into the death of a Bonelli eagle found poisoned near Marseille has led to the seizure of banned insecticides, the very ones that could have been lethal to the endangered raptor, the French Biodiversity Authority announced Friday.
This long-term investigation, which began in early 2021 with the discovery of the remains of this eagle in the city of Saint-Chamas, on the edge of the Etang-de-Berre, thus ended more than a year later, on May 3, with the seizure of a stock of an insecticidal product that was banned from selling for over 10 years due to its danger.
These “hidden” foods were discovered using equipment used to inject poison into the bait after a search of the home and workplace of the person who worked at the site where the predator was discovered.
These investigations, carried out by OFB environmental inspectors, were carried out as part of a judicial investigation initiated by the Aix-en-Provence prosecutor’s office in connection with the destruction of a protected species. The Bonelli eagle, the emblem of the Mediterranean region, is indeed one of four breeding eagle species in France and the most endangered species, with only 42 pairs recorded in 2021, OFB said in a press release.
This predator is listed in France as endangered, under the category of “endangered”, insists the Office, stressing that the poisoning of an animal belonging to a protected species is punishable by three years in prison and a fine of 150,000 euros. Euro.
Closer to completion, the investigation by the French Biodiversity Authority will be forwarded to the public prosecutor, who will decide on any judicial action.
This poison, long used to control wild animals, for example, caused the eradication of the wolf population in France in 1930, recalls OFB in a press release.
“Even today, we still find many animals that are poisoned every year,” a phenomenon with serious consequences, the Office emphasizes, “because the entire food chain can be poisoned, right down to scavengers such as vultures, or predators such as eagles.