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Parliamentary questions
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30 January 2015
E-001550-15
Question for written answer E-001550-15
to the Commission
Rule 130
Lola Sánchez Caldentey (GUE/NGL)

 Subject:  Animal mistreatment — ‘Releasing of ducks’ in local festivities in Sagunto
 Answer in writing 

Each year in the town of Sagunto, Valencia, during the festivities in honour of its patron saint, a ‘suelta de patos’ [releasing of ducks] is carried out from the dock of the port. This involves throwing ducks en masse into the sea, which are then captured in the water by the participants.

Various ecologist organisations have been denouncing for some time now that during the ‘suelta de patos’ the birds suffer mistreatment from the stress, anguish and fear they experience due to the very high levels of noise and light involved, as well as being thrown into the sea — which is not their natural habitat — and then chased and caught by the revellers in the water. As a result, they try to flee, thrashing their wings in desperation and terror.

Furthermore, in terms of a binding recommendation issued by the Standing Committee of the Council of Europe on 22 June 1999 concerning the manner in which domestic ducks should be treated on farms, ducks ‘should not be used for other purposes, including public spectacles or exhibitions’.

What measures does the European Union intend to adopt in order to ensure that ducks are not mistreated in the festivities in honour of the patron saint of Sagunto?

Original language of question: ES 
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