Poisoned peregrine rescued in Northern Ireland

Peregrine Falcon by Martin EagerA farmer, an RSPB warden, a politician and a falconer/gamekeeper have joined forces in Northern Ireland this week to rescue a stricken peregrine falcon believed to have been poisoned.

The bird was found by a farmer in a field at Churchill, Derrygonnelly, County Fermanagh. The farmer contacted an RSPB warden who collected the bird and passed her over to Stormont politician Jim Wells, who also just happens to be a peregrine expert and Chairman of the Northern Ireland Raptor Study Group.

Jim immediately recognised the symptoms of Alphachloralose poisoning (it thins the blood and causes death by hypothermia) and so he whacked up the car heater as he drove the victim towards Lisburn. Once there, the peregrine was passed to registered falconer/gamekeeper Alan Coates.The bird was put in an incubator and given a saline solution and appears to be making good progress, although it is still early days. She remains under Alan’s care and is currently enjoying strips of pheasant breast!

Peregrine photo by Martin Eager

4 Responses to “Poisoned peregrine rescued in Northern Ireland”

  1. 1 Rural Rascal
    August 30, 2013 at 10:06 pm

    I rescued a hen peregrine this spring that had flown into an oak tree in the dusk, had damaged her wing and was lying in shock in the middle of the road. She was successfully released after expensive treatment and six weeks specialist recuperation roosting on the back of a sofa. Just another day for a shooting / country sports person – welcome to the real world!

    • 2 Merlin
      September 1, 2013 at 11:17 pm

      I use to be a member of Raptor Rescue, we treated many Birds of prey. they were brought in by all sorts of people not just country/shooting types, never realised that was the real world. there is no doubt a lot of good and knowledgeable people who shoot, what they fail to acknowledge though is there are a lot involved in the more commercial side of game shooting who don’t give a damn about wildlife and whose only interests are making money. These people are parasites on your sport, they align themselves along side all the good work done by others, its should be members of the shooting fraternity rooting these people out, you know who the worst offenders are, start there instead of burying your heads or trying to pass it off you are victims of a conspiracy

  2. 3 Marco McGinty
    August 30, 2013 at 10:57 pm

    Well done to all involved.

    Rural Rascal, if you did carry out this deed, then I congratulate you, but please be aware that you will be one of a very small minority in the country sports section of society that would have done the same.

  3. 4 Jimmy
    August 30, 2013 at 11:02 pm

    Its hard enough to poison a Peregrine. Sounds like someone went out of their way to harm this bird. The problem with BOP persecution and the deliberate misuse of pesticides as recent cases have shown, is as big a problem in NI as it is in certain other parts of the UK. Many of the Golden Eagles released by the ROI projects have gone “missing” over NI too

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