Reporting of raptor deaths encouraged

Published 13 April 2018

Police in the Highlands and Islands are continuing to encourage the reporting of birds of prey following a number of non-suspicious incidents.

Four raptor carcasses found in recent weeks have been reported to police, allowing them to be examined by specialist vets.

Among these were a buzzard and a barn owl found in Ross-shire, another buzzard found in the Strathspey area and a golden eagle found on Barra.  

Following tests it was found that all of the deaths were related to natural causes.

Both of the buzzards and the owl appear to have starved over the course of the winter.

Inspector Mike Middlehurst said: "I would like to thank the people who reported these incidents for their continued awareness in bringing this to our attention.

"While there has not proved to be anything suspicious about any of these deaths, we're grateful for the information.

"This is useful for Police Scotland and a wide variety of partners.

"We would continue to encourage anyone who finds the remains of a bird of prey and has concerns about it to contact us so the circumstances can be assessed.

"You can contact Police Scotland on 101 to report any concerns."

Franz Brulisauer Senior Veterinary Investigations Officer for Scotland's Rural College said: "Understanding wild bird deaths is helpful in establishing the full picture of the activities of birds of prey as well as monitoring the wild bird population for avian influenza and residues of pesticides which originate from contamination in the environment."


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Call 101 for non-emergencies and general enquiries, in an emergency call 999. If you have information about a crime you can also contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.


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