The county of Bjelovar-Bilogora has employed its hunting fraternity in a new conservation effort. One of Croatia's richest regions for the pastime, Bjelovar-Bilogora has 43 common hunting grounds and 20 state-owned hunting grounds.
While hunting remains a controversial matter for some, especially with vegetarianism and veganism becoming increasingly popular, the hunting community nevertheless play a vital role in preserving the wild landscape and the health of the animals within it.
Some of Bjelovar-Bilogora county's hunting fraternity at this year's Mayor's Hunt in Veliki Grđevac © Boris Savic
Bjelovar-Bilogora has the biggest and best-preserved rural landscape in Croatia for hunting with wild deer, boar and many other species dwelling there. International visitors come to the region outside of the traditional tourist season in order to take advantage of the pristine terrain, expert guides and a professional hospitality infrastructure which has welcomed hunters and other guests for many decades.
Cooking sausages (probably not vegetarian) at this year's Mayor's Hunt © bjelovar.info
The new conservation effort will help protect the rural areas in which the pastime takes place and regular hunters of the region will also assist in drives to protect animals living there, such as the current drive to protect wild deer from invasive and dangerous parasites.
Hunting is a key tradition of this region and a centuries-old activity within Bjelovar-Bilogora county. Announcement of the conservation drive coincided with the annual Mayor's hunt in Veliki Grđevac at which Bjelovar-Bilogora county Mayor Damir Bajs put his full weight behind the new conservation effort.