Another of this year’s young satellite-tagged hen harriers has been found dead.
This time it’s Rowan, a bird that hatched at Langholm and was being satellite-tracked by the Hawk & Owl Trust.
Here’s a joint statement put out by the Hawk & Owl Trust and Natural England:
The body of a juvenile, male hen harrier – named Rowan – was recovered in Cumbria on 22nd October. He was satellite tagged at the Langholm project in the Scottish borders, as part of a joint venture between Natural England and the Hawk and Owl Trust. Following an autopsy, Natural England has passed details to the police for investigation.
We are unable to make further comments or enter into discussion at this time as this may be prejudicial to ongoing investigations.
This press statement is clearly suggestive that criminal activity was responsible for the death of this hen harrier.
We look forward to further details about the cause of death and appeals for information from the Police in the very near future.
We especially look forward to the Hawk & Owl Trust announcing its withdrawal from the DEFRA Hen Harrier Action Plan on the grounds that one of its ‘immoveable provisos‘ for taking part has been broken (again).
UPDATE 7 November 2016: Hen Harrier Rowan ‘likely to have been shot’ in Yorkshire Dales National Park (see here)