November 16, 2005
The Dutch animal protection agency demanded prosecution Tuesday for the shooting of a sparrow that knocked over 23,000 dominoes during an attempt to set a world record.
The ill-fated bird flew into an exposition center Monday in the northern city of Leeuwarden, where employees of TV company Endemol NV had worked for weeks setting up more than 4 million dominoes in an attempt to break the official Guinness World Record for falling dominoes.
The common house sparrow of a species on the national endangered list was chased into a corner and shot by an exterminator with an air rifle.
"Under Dutch law, you need a permit to kill this kind of bird, and a permit can only be granted when there's a danger to public health or a crop," said agency spokesman Niels Dorland. "That was not the case."
"I might add: Is it really necessary to kill a bird that knocked over a few dominoes for a game?" he asked.
Dorland said the agency plans to submit the case to national prosecutors.
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