Protected birds of prey have been mysteriously killed on Sandringham grounds
A sparrowhawk has been poisoned two months after the death of a goshawk
Punishment for killing a sparrowhawk is up to six months in jail and a £5,000 fine
Two years earlier a rare Montagu's harrier fitted with a tracking device vanished
By Andrew Young For The Mail On Sunday
Published: 22:03, 20 May 2017 | Updated: 18:00, 21 May 2017
It has all the ingredients of a country house murder-mystery: poisoned victims, accusing letters, vanishing evidence and a host of suspects.
Sadly, it is no work of fiction, rather a real-life whodunnit that has cast a shadow over the Queen's Norfolk retreat, Sandringham.
Thankfully none of the victims were house guests. Instead, the case involves protected birds of prey who are believed to have met their end on the estate, or nearby, in curious circumstances.
The Queen's Norfolk retreat, Sandringham has had a spate of bird of prey killings
And in the best traditions of Agatha Christie, the crimes have baffled the local constabulary.
One of the mysterious cases hit the headlines two months ago when The Mail on Sunday revealed the death at Sandringham of a goshawk, the body of which was later incinerated.
Two years earlier a rare Montagu's harrier fitted with a tracking device vanished, and before that there were claims that two hen harriers – which face extinction in the UK – were blasted out of the sky while flying over the 20,000 acre estate.
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.