Legal Protection of Migrant Birds

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The first migrant birds for the 2016/2017 winter migratory season are arriving in Sri Lanka and the Common Sandpiper(shown here),one of the first migrants to arrive,has been seen for the past two weeks or more.
All migrant birds are protected under Section 31(1) of the Fauna and Flora Protection Ordinance as long as they stay in Sri Lanka,which includes the sea that belongs to Sri Lanka under Maritime Zones Act of 1976.This protection is provided not only to those regular migrants but even to the Vagrants and Stragglers as well.
Hence,it is an offence to kill,hurt or injure,capture and keep a migrant bird or parts,or to sell or offer to sell any migrant bird or parts.
However,none of the migrant birds are in the category of Strictly Protected Species.

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Jagath Gunawardana Attorney-at-law
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