THE Almeria Guardia Civil are investigating seven people for capturing wild finches in violation of nature protection and hunting laws.
The investigations relate to three incidents in different locations of the province.
A tip off from a member of the public led officers to the Los Pilares area of Hijate in Alcontar, where they found four individuals with a two-metre long mesh net and two birds tied to the ground to act as decoys. The Guardia also found three birds in cages.
None of them had identification rings and there was no documentation to prove ownership.
Officers seized all the paraphernalia the four had for the captures and released the caged birds.
In the El Aguadero area of Berja a patrol came across a person with hunting materials, nets and traps and 15 young goldfinches, which the officers set free.
The third incident was in Alcolea. This time two people hid among reeds when they saw the Guardia patrol. The officers found a parked car nearby, and spread out the sort of items used for furtively hunting finches.
The Guardia kept the car under surveillance, stepping forward to get the pair to identify themselves when they emerged from their hiding place and approached the vehicle.