As regular CFZ-watchers will know, for some time Corinna has been doing a column for Animals & Men and a regular segment on On The Track... particularly about out-of-place birds and rare vagrants. There seem to be more and more bird stories from all over the world hitting the news these days so, to make room for them all - and to give them all equal and worthy coverage - she has set up this new blog to cover all things feathery and Fortean.

Thursday 10 March 2016

Fears Bird Dumped Near St Albans Could Have Been Used In Illegal Cockfighting

Thursday, March 3rd, 2016 8:54am

The RSPCA is investigating after a blind and injured cockerel was dumped on a country lane near St Albans...

The discovery was made after the bird - suspected to have been used by cockfighters - was spotted wandering Colney Heath Lane on Monday.

Officials from the animal charity believe the bird had leg and wing injuries consistent with fighting - which was made illegal in 1835.

Inspector Jaime Godfrey told us: "It looks like he has been blinded from having his eyes pecked. His chest and the front of his legs are raw and sore and the top of his wings are injured, likely from being rubbed on a cage.

The injuries are indicative of cockfighting".

Inspector Mike Butcher, a member of the RSPCA's special operations unit which tackles blood sports like cockfighting, added: "This cockerel's spur had been cut off, this was probably to fit a metal spur so it could inflict maximum damage to the opponent's bird during a cockfight.

We suspect this bird was probably involved in an organised fight and was injured in the barbaric 'sport' of cockfighting which continues despite being illegal".

Anyone with information can contact the RSPCA's inspectorate appeal line on 0300 123 8018.

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