Killer of Domino-toppling sparrow threatened
15 November 2005
AMSTERDAM — At least seven organisations have become involved in the saga surrounding the sparrow shot dead on Monday.
The little bird’s crime was to knock over 23,000 of the 4.3 dominoes laid out for an attempt to break the domino toppling record in the Dutch province of Friesland on Friday. The decision was taken to shoot the bird after attempts to capture it alive were unsuccessful.
Animal rights group Dierenbescherming and the provincial authority have both appointed officials to investigate the shooting dead of the bird with an air gun. Dierenbescherming said sparrows are a protected species and a licence is required before killing one.
Meanwhile, the man who fired the fatal shot has been threatened with death.
Animal management company Duke Fauna Beheer which employs the man has gone to the police. “We have not made an official complaint as that would be no use. But if an idiot comes around here, we want a direct line to the police so they can come quickly to help us,” the company said.
The bird flew into the FEC exhibition centre in Leeuwarden in the north of the Netherlands on Monday where 4,321,000 domino bricks have been arranged for Domino Day.
Singer Anastacia is to knock over the first brick of the bid on the world record on Sunday in a show televised live on Dutch television channel SBS 6. The bird couldn’t wait.
“The sparrow knocked over 23,000 bricks. Luckily, we have 750 safeguards built in. Otherwise we could forget about the world record,” said Robin Paul Weijers, the organisers of Domino Day 2005.
The investigators appointed by the animal rights group and the provincial government have the power to issue a warning, or lodge a complaint with the public prosecutor’s office.
The German animal protection group has also complained to broadcaster RTL about the killing of the sparrow. RTL will broadcast the Domino Day event in Germany.
Endemol, the broadcasting company producing Domino Day for Dutch channel SBS 6, has hired extra security for the FEC centre. It did this partly because Dutch Radio DJ Ruud de Wild has offered a reward of EUR 3,000 to anyone who topples the dominoes prior to the start of the event.
[Copyright Expatica News + ANP 2005]
Subject: Dutch news