Six birds of prey found dead in an Aberdeenshire field will be examined today to determine what killed them.
Postmortems will be carried out on the buzzards, which were found in a field in the Fordoun area.
The find was made at about 3.30pm on Wednesday, in a field about a mile north-west of Fordoun on the unclassified road leading to Auchenblae.
A police spokesman said: “The birds are on their way to be examined later today, and hopefully once that has been done we will be able to establish the cause of death.”
More than 20 birds of prey, including six buzzards and several 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 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.