RUSSIA Ecological disaster in the Russian countryside

Thousands of wild animals victims of banned agricultural pesticides. A side effect of Moscow’s war against Ukraine. The denunciation of hunters and fishermen in the south-west of Russia. Only the Stavropol authorities admitted the problem and took action.

Moscow () – Due to the increasingly difficult conditions of the economy and daily life in the south of Russia, close to the war zones with Ukraine, farmers have begun to use prohibited techniques, causing a real death of animals and a great ecological disaster in the region. Corpses of foxes, hares, ducks, seagulls, owls and even storks have been lying everywhere for more than two months, with devastating images broadcast on social networks from the cell phones of hunters and fishermen.

Aleksandr, a hunter from the Rostov region, told Novaya Gazeta journalists that he had taken out a special license for hunting hares last year and had to return it due to extermination: “We only collect carcasses of splendid little animals in pools of blood.” It was thought that there was a new unknown pandemic and those responsible for the sector began to carry out studies, but they concluded that it was a chemical substance and not an infection.

The systematic use of dangerous products has turned out to be another type of epidemic. In early November, the laboratories of the Rosselkhoznadzor control center, which specializes in monitoring the agricultural sector, began collecting dead wild animals from the Rostov, Krasnodar and Orel areas.

Another hunter from the Ipatov province, in the Stavropol region, recounts that “as soon as we went out into the field, we came across six fox carcasses; next to them were the carcasses of partridges and a huge number of dead mice; In the surroundings we have also noticed a strange red grain”, fertilized with chemicals to which the animals are intolerant. “We have seen similar scenes in the past, but never in such large numbers and widespread throughout the area…jackals, foxes and birds of prey all pounce on poisoned mice, thinking they are easy prey, and they all end up dead.”

People began to murmur about the “tragedy of the wild world” when some hunters found dead, in the Stavropol province, Petrovsk, a whole flock of a few hundred very rare gray gulls, heading to Israel for the winter. following his usual itinerary through the countryside and river basins of southern Russia. Here they usually gather to rest and regain strength to continue flying, but this time only a few specimens made it. Most of them fell on the shores of Lake Soleny, near the village of Donskaja Balka.

Arseny Filippov, a leader in the Russian Native environmental movement, explains that the mass killing of animals, including pheasants, wolves and rare birds such as the ferruginea and others, is nothing new in these regions due to the widespread use in the fields of prohibited pesticides against the mouses. Last fall local farmers indiscriminately spread these practices by dumping tons of poison on the fields, with catastrophic consequences: “Animals of tens of thousands of different species have died.”

The Stavropol authorities have been the only ones to have admitted, albeit partially, the problem and created an investigation commission that reported the death of “800 seagulls, four hares and a partridge”. In the bodies, “a poison containing phosphorous organic elements” was identified that caused their death. Consequently, they filed an accusation of illegal practices against unidentified culprits.

In the population, and also in the local media, the issue is provoking increasingly indignant reactions that denounce “the disappearance of the North Caucasian pheasant” from almost all regions of southern Russia. A group of dead black crows fell in front of the residence of the governor of the Kuban, in the central Krasnaja street of the city of Krasnodar. The deaths of the local fauna have been compared to the effects of the bombardments that take place a few kilometers from these areas: the war exterminates not only humans but also animals.

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Written by Editor TLN

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