BY LINDA STEWART – 10 JUNE 2014
Three kites have been found dead in Co Down following a suspected poisoning incident.
A female red kite was found slumped in her nest in Katesbridge along with her two dead chicks.
The authorities were alerted by a local resident who had been watching the nest from her house and was worried that something had happened to the female.
The birds have been recovered by members of the Northern Ireland Raptor Study Group (NIRSG) and the PSNI and submitted for a post-mortem and toxicology testing.
This is the latest in a series of illegal poisonings apparently targeting Northern Ireland's tiny red kite population. Red kites were re-introduced here between 2008 and 2010 after having been persecuted to extinction in the north of the island 200 years ago.