A BUZZARD was discovered with five shotgun pellets in its body, police said yesterday.
One of the pellets had shattered the buzzard’s wing and such were the extent of its injuries the bird of prey had to be put down.
North Yorkshire Police have launched an investigation and yesterday urged anyone with any information about the incident, which happened near Easingwold, to come forward.
Pc Clare Mayes, of Thirsk and Easingwold Safer Neighbourhood Team, said: “I am appealing to anyone who saw people shooting in the area on Friday, February 14, to get in touch.
“I would also appeal to anyone who may have been out shooting on that day to come forward as it may be the case that they have accidentally shot the buzzard while shooting other wildlife.
“It is always sad when a bird of prey sustains such injuries and it is important that we establish how this buzzard was shot.”
The bird of prey was found on Brownmoor Lane in Huby, near Easingwold, on Friday, February 14. The buzzard was taken to a local vets but could not survive its injuries and had to be put down.
Officers are keen to establish how the buzzard received its fatal injuries and want anyone with information to contact them via the 101 number.
Buzzards are found in a number of habitats around the country including woodland and moorland, arable land, marsh bog and villages and they may even be seen in towns and cities.
Twenty years ago there were fewer known pairs in the Yorkshire Dales National Park but in recent years the number of known pairs has increased dramatically.