Hooks attached to pigeon’s legs designed to injure raptors

The RSPCA is appealing for information after the discovery of a pigeon that had sharp hooks attached to its legs. The bird was found stuck in someone’s garden in Poolfield Road, Lichfield on Tuesday.

There’s only one reason for attaching hooks like this to a pigeon, and that’s to cause serious damage to any raptor, like a sparrowhawk or a peregrine, that might try to prey on the pigeon.

Pigeon hook 1

pigeon hook 2

Presumably the RSPCA has paid a visit to the local pigeon racing lofts in the Lichfield area as part of their investigation.

Full article in the Lichfield Mercury here

16 Responses to “Hooks attached to pigeon’s legs designed to injure raptors”

  1. 1 Denise Jones
    February 6, 2016 at 3:33 pm

    Disgusting when you catch whoever did this do the same to them they are worse they are worse than animals

  2. February 6, 2016 at 4:55 pm

    This is utterly vile and immeasurably unethically cruel. What’s to be done about it?

    • 3 crypticmirror
      February 6, 2016 at 5:32 pm

      Nothing. Pigeon racers tend to vote Labour, so nothing will be done from them, and they are playing their part in helping the overwhelmingly Tory shooting fraternity persecute birds of prey. Absolutely nothing will be done, and the police will be happy to be able to ignore it. Maybe some “direct action” groups will be able to do something but short of that then nothing will be done. Good on the Lichfield Mercury for publicising it, that is probably the most that can be realistically expected to be done right now (and something most media wouldn’t do). That drip-drip-drip of public opinion might change things twenty or thirty years down the line. I know that seems very defeatist, but it has been hell of a day here. Sorry.

      Speaking of publicity, RPS, did you not used to have a share to twitter button?

      • February 6, 2016 at 6:55 pm

        Yes, we did, but Twitter decided to move the ‘share’ counter from the button (a move which has infuriated many bloggers!) so we’ve removed the button altogether. We’re still very active on Twitter though, now approaching 6,000 followers.

      • 5 Simon Tucker
        February 7, 2016 at 11:54 am

        What an absurd post. You might not have noticed but Labour are not in government and haven’t been since May 2010. As for the voting habits of pigeon fanciers, how do you know? Has anyone measured the dynamic? Given that a sizeable proportion of C’s and D’s vote Tory, hence the natural majority they have in England, it is highly unlikely that the majority of pigeon fanciers vote Labour. Your post just smacks of snobbish bigotry and total irrelevance in the face of an horrific crime.

  3. 6 Les Wallace
    February 6, 2016 at 5:00 pm

    Not surprised at this, but still fuming. They’ve also found live tethered pigeons doused in poison near peregrine eyries and there have been threats from pigeon fanciers saying they would strap explosives to their birds to kill raptors(!?!). One of the worst things I ever saw was visiting a friends house who asked me over to the kitchen window, it was to watch his father drown an unwanted bird in a bucket of water. Its wings thrashed horrifically, but as a shy 15 year old house guest I didn’t intervene. They estimate pigeon racing is losing supporters at 2 to 3 percent a year, usually I think it’s sad when we lose a part of our history like that, but in this case its death can’t come quick enough. Some prominent anti raptor types also keep pigeons or at least caged birds in their gardens. Is this in the hope that a BOP will have a go at them so they can make an issue out of it? Wouldn’t be surprised they seem to love playing the martyr and their sport is incessantly attacking conservation sector.

  4. 7 crypticmirror
    February 6, 2016 at 5:25 pm

    When a person takes up pigeon racing and pigeon flying then raptors are just one of the hazards that ought to be seen as part of the sport. I get it is frustrating and upsetting for someone who has raised a pigeon and trained it to lose it to a hawk or a peregrine, but they ought to know going in that it will happen and have steeled themselves to accept it is part of the sport. It is a factor in the uncertainty of whose pigeon will ultimately be a winner.

  5. February 6, 2016 at 6:19 pm

    Pigeon racing is a hobby, unless you’re part of the illegal gambling that takes place, peregrines and sparrowhawks are priceless elements of our natural heritage…

  6. February 6, 2016 at 6:25 pm

    Ironically I think that pigeon racing’s biggest damage to conservation has been in skewing the peregrine population by increasing it along “traditional” race routes. I am sure that has masked a big decline in peregrines as our overgrazed and chemically degraded countryside has cut down on “natural” prey….once the pigeons have disappeared in some areas of South Scotland peregrine numbers have dropped markedly.

  7. 11 Jimmy
    February 6, 2016 at 7:18 pm

    Such things are a product of a sick mind

  8. 12 Craig Young
    February 6, 2016 at 8:26 pm

    Looks like a pigeon fancier went rogue

  9. 13 keen birder
    February 6, 2016 at 8:53 pm

    Very sad and sick situation. Racing is more than a hobby to some fanciers, a few birds are sold at auction for a lot of money, also some of the races have large cash prizes, I worked with one such fancier for 13 years, he was paranoid about Sparrow hawks, getting his pigeons, he lost 2 of his dogs to poison, which we suspected to be a huge own goal. Theres a definate decline in numbers of people keeping them, it can be an expensive hobby, with feed, entrys, and travel to take birds many miles from home regularly on training flights. But still a lot cheaper than shooting. Sad sickos, deserve to be in court.

  10. 14 Chris Roberts
    February 6, 2016 at 11:10 pm

    Despicable action to take I really hope, but don’t expect, that they’ll catch the scumbag that did this. This is the time that I’ve heard of these hooks, has this ever been known before?

  11. 15 Me
    February 7, 2016 at 5:45 pm

    What absolutely sick sad people you are. I say people because I can’t see only one person being able to attach the hooks to the pigeon’s legs.Think of the distress the poor bird must have been in trying to get about with those things attached to its feet.You need help who ever you are to think up such a disgusting method as a way to kill/ injure another animal.You must be right proud of yourselves you freaks.Some flipping pigeon fancier when you “sacrifice ” one of your birds in such a manner.

  12. 16 Valerie Clark
    November 22, 2020 at 7:37 pm

    Is there no end to the inhuman ways to harm wildlife, just sickening. Sorry excuses for humans.☹️☹️😤

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