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Buzzards found dead in Aberdeenshire

Mearns councillor George Carr
Mearns councillor George Carr

The discovery of six dead birds of prey in an Aberdeenshire field is being investigated by police.

The buzzards were discovered at around 3.30pm on Wednesday in a field approximately one mile north-west of Fordoun on an unclassified road.

It is not yet known how the birds died, and police confirmed inquiries are ongoing to establish the circumstances surrounding the find.

They have appealed for anyone with information to contact them.

Mearns councillor George Carr said last night: “It’s quite worrying. Police are investigating and need to try to find the facts and what the circumstances are, and really just see if there’s anything to suggest where they came from.

“There is always a lot of buzzards about the area. A crime is a crime and needs to be investigated, we need to find out what caused these six deaths.”

Mr Carr added that the find was “very unusual”.

A police spokeswoman said: “Police Scotland is investigating the death of six buzzards in the Fordoun area.

“The remains of the birds were discovered at around 1530hrs on Wednesday, October 1 in a field approximately one mile northwest of Fordoun on an unclassified road leading from Fordoun to Auchenblae.

“Inquiries are ongoing to establish the circumstances surrounding their death. Anyone with any information should call Police on 101.”

More than 20 birds of prey, including six buzzards and a number of red kites, were found dead in a two-square-mile area around Conon Bridge between March and May. Police confirmed at least 12 kites and three buzzards were illegally poisoned – more than twice the amount that died from poisoning in the whole of Scotland last year.

Buzzards are the most common bird of prey in the UK and are fully protected under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981. The act makes it an offence to kill, injure or take a buzzard, or to take, damage or destroy an active nest or its contents. In Scotland it is also an offence to obstruct or prevent any wild bird from using its nest.

They are found in most habitats including woodland, moorland and bog, and can sometimes even be seen in towns and cities. There are currently between 57,000 and 79,000 breeding pairs in the UK.

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