13:14Thursday 26 November 2015
Police and wildlife experts have seen a rise in the number of incidents reported against birds in Norfolk.
The county has the highest rate of incidents against birds in the eastern counties, with 28 reported during 2014, according to the Birdcrime report.
The county has seen a 55 per cent increase on the number of incidents. The 2013 total was 18.
A total of 19 of the incidents were reported against birds of prey, including the illegal poisoning of nine buzzards in north Norfolk.
The figures have been released days after a rare red-footed falcon was found shot in the Whittlesey area.
Dr James Robinson, Director of the RPSB in Eastern England, said: “Illegal persecution of wildlife has no place in any society and incidents like the shocking poisoning of nine buzzards here in Norfolk are abhorrent to anyone who loves wildlife.
“The Birdcrime 2014 report makes a clear case for closer cooperation between conservation charities, landowners, farmers, game keepers and police, as well as public users of the countryside, to ensure that the laws that protect wildlife are effectively enforced so we can end wildlife persecution here in the east.”
Birdcrime 2014 documents 179 reports of shooting and destruction of birds of prey, and 72 of illegal poisoning of birds and other animals, in the UK in 2014.
Neighbouring Lincolnshire recorded 10 incidents, with eight in Cambridgeshire, 13 in Suffolk but the lowest is five in Bedfordshire.