The Korea Herald


Jeju tangerine orchard owner arrested for intentionally poisoning birds

By Shin Ji-hye

Published : March 29, 2024 - 11:41

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The Korean Association for Bird Protection The Korean Association for Bird Protection

The owner of a tangerine orchard has been detained for deliberately poisoning birds on Jeju Island, police said on Friday.

The owner faces charges of violating the Wildlife Protection and Management Act after injecting pesticides into tangerines with a syringe, leading to the deaths of approximately 200 birds, including birds like the bull-headed shrike and the light-vented bulbul. This act was carried out in the orchard in Namwon-eup, Seogwipo City.

The arrest followed reports to the local police from passersby who witnessed the mass deaths of birds within the orchard. Upon investigation, it was concluded that the birds had died from pesticide poisoning. The orchard owner was identified as the suspect based on eyewitness accounts and was apprehended at their home on the same day.

The owner confessed to his actions during police questioning, stating he was angered by the birds eating the tangerines from his orchard but claimed he did not anticipate that his actions would lead to their deaths.

The Jeju Provincial Police have since collected samples from the deceased birds and the poisoned tangerines for toxicological analysis at the Jeju Institute of Health and Environment to determine the exact cause of the birds' deaths.

According to the Wildlife Protection and Management Act, killing a wild animal by spraying or injecting toxic substances, pesticides or similar substances can result in imprisonment of up to 2 years or a fine of up to 20 million won ($14,831).