Posts Tagged ‘kestrel

22
Aug
20

Kestrel attacked with baseball bat: West Yorkshire Police seek witnesses

West Yorkshire Police’s Wildlife & Rural Team (Leeds) attended an incident in Bradley Park, Huddersfield where someone had attacked a kestrel with a baseball bat.

The date and time of the incident is not given in this police tweet posted yesterday but police are appealing for witnesses who haven’t already come forward to please do so now.

If you saw this incident or have information relating to it please call the police on 101 and quote ref # 13200421413.

 

09
Aug
20

£10,500 reward for info on four poisoned peregrines

Last week we blogged about the 4th peregrine confirmed to have been illegally poisoned with banned toxins in the Channel Islands (see here).

[Two of the four poisoned peregrines, along with the pigeon that had been laced with poisons and used as bait. Photo via Alderney Bird Observatory]

It was reported that a 5th (unidentified) raptor had been submitted for toxicology analysis and that a reward of £5,000 was on offer for information leading to a conviction.

That fifth raptor has now been reported to be a kestrel – toxicology results are pending.

[The dead kestrel. Photo via Guernsey Animal Aid]

In early August the reward for information had increased from £5,000 to £7,500 but according to Alderney Bird Observatory the reward now stands at £10,500.

If you have any information that could help this investigation please contact Sue Vidamour at Guernsey Animal Aid: 07781 150388.

03
Aug
20

Buzzard & kestrel confirmed illegally poisoned in Derbyshire

In March 2020, just after the start of lockdown, Derbyshire Constabulary reported the suspected poisoning of a kestrel and a buzzard, both found dead next to the remains of a pigeon at Ault Hucknall near Chesterfield (see here).

[Photo via Derbyshire Constabulary]

Samples were sent for toxicology analysis and last week the police received the findings. Both birds had been illegally poisoned with the banned pesticide Aldicarb.

This news was published on the Rural Crime Team’s Facebook page (see below). We haven’t been able to find any further news reports, for e.g. on the Derbyshire Constabulary website or in the local press.

These latest illegal poisonings are not the first in this area. A total of six buzzards were also illegally poisoned in neighbouring Glapwell between 2015-2016 (2 x buzzards, March 2015; 1 x buzzard & pheasant bait, February 2016; 3 x buzzards & pheasant bait, March 2016). Alphachloralose was the poison used in those cases.

[Some of the poisoned buzzards and a pheasant bait found at Glapwell in 2016, photos via RSPB]

There is a record of those poisonings in the RSPB’s 2016 BirdCrime report (here) and a short video, here:

It is quite clear that somebody in this area has access to banned poisons and is not afraid to set out poisonous baits that could kill anyone unfortunate to come in to contact with them, let alone wildlife and domestic animals and pets.

Let’s hope we see a continued publicity drive from Derbyshire Constabulary – these crimes warrant maximum awareness and exposure.

27
Jul
20

More birds of prey illegally killed in & around Peak District National Park

As conservationists continue to express concern for the safety of the visiting Bearded Vulture in the Peak District National Park (e.g. see here), the RSPB has published a blog detailing more cases of confirmed and suspected illegal raptor persecution that have been recorded in the area since the beginning of lockdown.

[This shot buzzard had to be euthanized due to the extent of its injuries. Photo by Peak District Raptor Monitoring Group]

The RSPB’s updated list includes the following, some of which have already featured on this blog and some which haven’t previously been publicised:

NEW: In the north of the National Park, the remains of a short-eared owl, an amber-listed species, were found on a grouse moor near Glossop on 7 May. A post-mortem recently concluded that shooting had been the cause of death. No leads were forthcoming from police enquiries.

NEW: Near Agden Reservoir, an area dominated by driven grouse moors, four raven chicks were found dead in a nest also on 11 May. The parent birds had been seen bringing food to the young, then vanished without explanation. The chicks were almost at the point of fledging, and the RSPB say the adults were exceptionally unlikely abandon the nest at that stage. The incident is being investigated by South Yorkshire Police.

NEW: Test results are awaited in connection with an adult peregrine found dead in the Upper Derwent Valley.

NEW: In the south, just outside the National Park an eyewitness reported seeing two buzzards being shot near Ashbourne on 1 April 2020. A member of the public was watching the two birds circling a wood, on land managed for pheasant shooting, when he heard a shot and saw the birds fall. There’s no comment about a police investigation.

PREVIOUSLY REPORTED: On 11 May, a buzzard was found mortally wounded on land managed for gamebird shooting near Diggle. It was found alive but with terrible injuries and sadly had to be euthanized. An x-ray revealed six pieces of shot lodged in the bird’s body. [This crime has previously been blogged about here]

PREVIOUSLY REPORTED: In the south of the Park, a buzzard and two peregrines are being tested for poison after being found dead in Staffordshire. [These incidents have previously been blogged about here]

PREVIOUSLY REPORTED: In mid-June, Derbyshire Police issued an appeal for information after three peregrine nests were robbed of their eggs, all within the National Park. The RSPB alerted the police about one of the incidents. [These incidents have previously been blogged about here]

PREVIOUSLY REPORTED: A dead kestrel and a buzzard have also gone for poison testing: they were found near Glapwell, where several buzzards were found poisoned in 2016. [These incidents have previously been blogged about here] – see UPDATE at foot of blog.

To read the RSPB blog in full please click here

The RSPB’s Head of Investigations, Mark Thomas, was also on BBC Radio Derby a few days ago talking about the ongoing killing of birds of prey in the Peak District National Park. Available here (starts 3hrs 16) for 24 days.

UPDATE 3rd August 2020: Buzzard and kestrel confirmed illegally poisoned in Derbyshire (here)

25
Mar
20

Buzzard & kestrel suspected poisoned in Derbyshire

Derbyshire Constabulary has published the following message on social media this evening:

Derbyshire Rural Crime Team is investigating after two birds of prey were found dead in the Ault Hucknall area of Chesterfield.

A Kestrel and a Buzzard were found on Monday 23 March. Initial investigations lead us to believe they have been poisoned rather than shot.

The birds have been recovered and an investigation launched.

Anyone with information is asked to contact the Rural Crime Team by emailing DRCT@derbyshire.police.uk quoting reference 20000159754.

You can also pass information anonymously to Crimestoppers by calling 0800 555 111 or visiting https://crimestoppers-uk.org/

ENDS

Well done to the police for a very speedy notification. Obviously the investigation is still in the early stages although the proximity of a plucked wood pigeon in these photos is probably a big clue.

UPDATE 3rd August 2020: Buzzard and kestrel confirmed illegally poisoned in Derbyshire (here)

27
Jan
20

Kestrel found shot in Nidderdale AONB, North Yorkshire

Nidderdale Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) in North Yorkshire is one of the most notorious raptor persecution blackspots in the UK.

Here it is in the news again, following the discovery of a critically injured kestrel suffering shotgun injuries. This is the THIRD shot kestrel we’ve reported on this blog in the last week (for the other two see here and here).

APPEAL FOR INFORMATION FROM NORTH YORKSHIRE POLICE (23rd January 2020)

Appeal for information after kestrel found shot near Harrogate.

North Yorkshire Police is appealing for information after a kestrel was found severely injured in Birstwith.

A member of the public found the kestrel grounded and suffering injuries in Birstwith near Harrogate on 30 December 2019. The kestrel was quickly taken to a specialist vet for treatment, where x-rays found the body contained two shotgun pellets.

One pellet was near the right stifle and the other in the shoulder region which it is likely had caused a debilitating fracture. The injuries were deemed to be very recent and would have rendered the bird unable to fly so it is unlikely to have travelled far from where it had been shot. The kestrel was also in good bodily condition so the injuries are believed to have been sustained fairly recently before it was found.

Given the location of the fracture and the kestrel’s need for very fine control of flight in order to hover, the decision was sadly taken to humanely euthanase the bird.

North Yorkshire Police is appealing for anyone with information about this incident or who may have seen anything in the area shortly before the bird was found to please call 101 quoting reference number: 12190238326

If you wish to remain anonymous, you can pass information to Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

ENDS

 

24
Jan
20

Kestrel shot in Gloucestershire

Just three days ago we blogged about a kestrel that had been found shot in Huddersfield (see here), one of several shot kestrels in the UK in recent years (e.g. see herehereherehere and here).

Here’s another one.

This time the kestrel has had to be euthanised in Gloucestershire after suffering devastating injuries.

He was seen falling to the ground by two members of the public immediately after they heard the shot. The kestrel was taken to Vale Wildlife Hospital but his injuries were catastrophic.

[Photos from Vale Wildlife Hospital]

This incident happened at around 4pm on January 12 on Strawberry Hill on Tewkesbury Hill and Ford House Lane just outside Newent in the Forest of Dean.

Rural and Wildlife Crime Officer PC Cath McDay said: “Someone has broken the law in shooting this protected bird of prey, which sadly could not be saved. This is unacceptable behaviour and I’m asking for anyone with information to contact police.”

Contact the police on tel 101 and quote reference #196 (13 Jan) or contact the RSPB on 01767 680551 or fill in their  crime form anonymously.

21
Jan
20

Kestrel found shot in Huddersfield

A kestrel was found shot in the Hade Edge area of Huddersfield, Yorkshire on Saturday 18th January 2020. It has been rescued and is currently undergoing treatment at Meltham Wildlife Rescue.

[Photos from West Yorkshire Police Wildlife Crime Officer PC Newsome, on Twitter as @WYP_CNewsome]

Well done to this police wildlife crime officer for getting the news out so quickly. Anyone with information is asked to contact the Police on Tel 101 and quote reference #13200032608.

You have to wonder what sort of moron takes a shot at a kestrel. Sadly it’s not the first – see here, here, here, here and here and it most definitely won’t be the last.

01
Mar
19

Kestrel shot in North Yorkshire

A kestrel has been euthanised after being found shot in North Yorkshire.

It’s a kestrel, FFS. You’d have to be a gun-toting psychopath to shoot one of these. Unsurprisingly, it’s not the first kestrel to have been shot in North Yorkshire, England’s raptor-killing capital (see here here and here).

[Photo by Louise Morris]

News of this latest shooting appeared on Twitter yesterday. We’ve been unable to find any more details:

25
Jul
18

Kestrel is latest victim of ‘vermin’ trap on grouse moor

We’ve blogged a bit recently about wildlife that has been caught/killed in traps set by gamekeepers on grouse moors (e.g. see here, here).

These traps are used to kill so-called ‘vermin’ (e.g. stoats and weasels) but we’ve seen plenty of evidence of non-target species also being trapped and killed (e.g. red squirrel, song thrush, mistle thrush, pied wagtail, red grouse, rabbits, ring ouzel).

Here’s another victim – a kestrel this time.

Thanks to the blog reader who sent us the following post from the Walkhighlands forum:

This incident took place on a grouse moor in south Scotland. We contacted the SSPCA for information on the fate of this kestrel. An SSPCA undercover inspector said:

We can confirm that we responded to a call from a member of the public regarding a kestrel that had been reportedly removed from a trap.

Unfortunately due to the severity of the injuries and to prevent further suffering the kestrel had to be put to sleep“.

We understand an investigation is underway to determine whether the trap was set legally or illegally.




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