Animal welfare groups expressed concern yesterday at the authorities’ failure to effectively ban hunting while the bad weather lasts in order to give game animals a chance to recover. There is no point in banning hunting in areas where snow has fallen as the birds only seek shelter in other areas. Many small birds are run over by cars after settling on road surfaces where there is no snow, Maria Ganoti of the Greek Wild Animals Hospital told Kathimerini yesterday after hunting was temporarily banned in seven areas including eastern Attica and Cape Sounion. Also yesterday, the Aegean regional authorities asked hunters not to shoot birds until December 27. Dozens of swans have been found shot in different parts of the country in recent weeks. The poor weather has driven many birds down into Greece from the north into areas where they have not been seen before. Marios Fournaris, director of the Alkyonis wild animals’ hospital on the island of Paros, said that last weekend six swans were shot on nearby Antiparos and two in Katerini, northern Greece.