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At approximately 6pm on Tuesday (11 June) two young persons aged 12 to 13 years in black tracksuits were seen by a dog walker to fire a catapult killing a duck on the canal tow path near to Scotland Bridge Lock in New Haw. The Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 protects wild animals, plants and habitats, under section 1(1) (a) WCA 1981 it is an offence to intentionally kill, injure or take any wild bird. To that end we are urging parents, guardians and teachers to look and listen out for behaviour like this in social media. It might also be worth checking bags and bedrooms for paraphernalia. Aside from the reckless damage often caused to other property through the abuse of catapults which have very few legitimate uses, usually for distributing bait in fishing, sickening images of wild birds enduring agonising deaths are frequently shared on social media. 

If you have knowledge of young people actively taking part in killing birds, a practice strictly subject to specific licences, please contact us at Contact us | Surrey Police quoting reference 45240066106.

If you witness anyone using catapults please call 999 immediately so that we can attend and deal with any offences at the time. We recommend downloading WhatThreeWords to your phone which helps to provide accurate location details should you ever find yourself in a rural setting needing help quickly. It also helps our control room colleagues see exactly where the last sightings were and organise containments on sometimes large open ground.


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Message Sent By
Carolyn Anstey
(Police, Office Manager, Runnymede)

Neighbourhood Alert Cyber Essentials