POLICE have issued a warning over the use of illegal pesticides and pesticide abuse, after a poisoned bird was found dead.

Towards the end of October, a red kite was reportedly found dead by a landowner in Nidderdale in the Yorkshire Dales. 

Concerned police arranged for the red kite to be X-Rayed, which also revealed it had sustained two pieces of shot. 

Toxicological tests during a postmortem, later carried out to determine its cause of death, showed the animal had large traces of bendiocarb, a pesticide licenced for use in the UK.

However, traces of the illegal pesticides, isofenphos and carbofuran, were found. 

Under current UK law, all birds are protected from persecution and it is a crime to intentionally kill, injure, or take away any wild bird.

In response, North Yorkshire Police said anyone found to be misusing pesticides, could find themselves being prosecuted for committing a variety of offences. 

A spokesperson for North Yorkshire Police said: “The test results suggest that someone not only has access to two illegal poisons.

"But is also placing them, along with a legal pesticide, into the environment so that a wild bird has been able to consume them.

"In addition to being poisoned, the bird had also been shot at least twice during its life.

"Anyone misusing pesticides may also be committing a variety of offences.

"If you come across an object which you believe may be contaminated with a pesticide or other poisons, please do not handle it.

"Report the situation immediately to the police giving accurate details of location and why you suspect involvement of a poison."

  • Anyone with information about persecution of birds of prey, whether by poisoning or shooting is urged to call North Yorkshire Police on 101.