The shot peregrine falcon which was found at The Stang forest, on the Teesdale and North Yorkshire border, in August 2015. Picture by the RSPB.
Helen Russell, Reporter (Wear Valley) / Monday 7 December 2015 /
AN investigation has been launched after an illegally shot peregrine falcon was found in County Durham.
The dead bird was discovered on the south-east edge of Stang Forest, on the outskirts of Teesdale, near the North Yorkshire border, on August 23 by a member of the public, who alerted Durham Police and the RSPB.
The carcass was sent for a post mortem examination, which confirmed that the bird died as a result of being shot.
The bird had suffered severe blood loss and most likely died close to to where it had sustained the gunshot wounds.
It is the third such crime against birds of prey in County Durham this year.
In March, two short-eared owls were found shot dead near Selset reservoir and in June, a shot peregrine was discovered at Castle Lake, in Bishop Middleham.
Howard Jones, RSPB Investigations Officer, said: “This case once again provides a window into the reasons behind the peregrine falcon’s struggle to breed in much of the English uplands.