Buzzard found shot dead near Powys

From ITV News:

A buzzard which was found illegally shot near Powys has prompted concern by the RSPB and police.

The bird was found dead on the ground by a walker near Llanrhaeadr-ym-mochnant on 10 February, and it was reported to the police.

The bird was X-rayed by a local vet and found to contain at least eight pieces of shot.

Buzzards, like all birds of prey, are protected under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981. To kill or injure one is a criminal offence and could result in an unlimited fine or up to six months in jail.

Jenny Shelton of the RSPB said: “It is saddening and concerning to hear that another protected bird of prey has been shot. This is a serious problem in Wales and the rest of the UK, and one which the RSPB employs a specialist team to tackle. We recently launched a hotline to provide a means of reporting crimes against birds of prey in complete confidence. Someone out there will know what has happened to this bird – please speak out and help end this brutal and illegal behavior“.

41 reports of wild bird crime in Wales were made to the RSPB’s Investigations unit in 2016, according to the 2016 Birdcrime report, published last November.

The report also revealed that there were no prosecutions for bird of prey persecution in the UK during 2016.

RSB Cymru Biodiversity Manager Stephen Bladwell said: “Knowing another bird of prey has fallen foul to persecution in Wales is disheartening. The latest Birdcrime report showed Powys was joint second highest UK County for raptor persecution from 2012-16 – with 22 confirmed incidents during the period. It seems there is a real problem in the county that needs addressing quickly if we are to protect the area’s wildlife. Our investigations team will continue to support Natural Resources Wales and the Rural Crime Team to address the issue“.


7 thoughts on “Buzzard found shot dead near Powys”

  1. Could the police check the shotgun licences of those living in and around the area. At least it would show something was being done.

    1. I am not sure why that would move anything forward. Whoever shot that Buzzard will almost certainly have had a licence anyway. I have had to give references for a few people’s licences and the system is pretty tight in the UK. The problems is that it is so easy to shoot stuff when nobody else is around.

  2. It’s understandable putting out press releases about Buzzards being killed, to raise public awareness. However my only concern is that it could lead to a misunderstanding that such an event is unusual. Many gamekeepers (professional and hobby) will shoot Buzzards, so there must be hundreds of them killed every year.

  3. Probably thousands killed every year Iain, but despite all this they have re colonised much of Britain, they are doing very well in most of Cumbria, once saw 16 in the air thermaling together, also once saw 16 from Tebay to top of Shap on M6, when I was a boy they were considered fairly rare, they are everywhere now in Cumbria, great bird, love to see them.

    1. I haven’t seen any statistics relating to English Buzzards, but in most of Scotland (or at least an area extending from the Borders and Ayrshire north to Perthshire and mid Argyll), Buzzards have declined by up to 80% since reaching a peak in 2001. That followed a highly significant increase and range expansion which began in the late 1980s, which was declared to be a great conservation success story, but largely unexplained. In my own study area however, it coincided with an unusually widespread and prolonged field vole ‘plague.’ A parallel increase in Kestrels, Short-eared Owls, Tawny Owls, Barn Owls and Ravens seemed to suggest a correlation. Numbers of all have declined again following vole shortages since the early 2000s. My point is that we should not be complacent about the current status of Buzzards, which is generally perceived to be high because the range expansion has not changed significantly in recent years.

  4. I think its because in the old days use of alphachorolose in eggs was very widely used, buzzards ate the dead crows and they died, theres been a massive change from this to using larsen traps, Barn owls are back in good numbers in Cumbria, since hundreds of nest boxes have been put up, Ravens are also seen now where they were not seen years ago, just my own thoughts that all.

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