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Dublin: 1°C Monday 17 January 2022

Buzzard shot and left for dead in Westmeath

“This poor bird must have been in agony until it was found and given pain relief.”

THE ISPCA IS appealing for information after a Buzzard was shot and badly injured in County Westmeath.

A member of the public found the injured Buzzard  in Castletown Geoghegan and brought it to the ISPCA National Animal Centre in Longford.

The bird received immediate pain relief and was then transferred to the Kildare Animal Foundation for specialist treatment by a wildlife vet.

One of its wings was so badly damaged that the bird could not be saved and had to be humanely euthanised to prevent further suffering.

photo 4 Source: Anita Kelly

Buzzard Xray (Shot - 14th Nov 2014) Source: ISPCA

Dan Donoher of the Kildare Animal Foundation said that one of the Buzzard’s wing tips had become so gangrenous he had no chance of survival.

“The right decision was made to put him humanely to sleep. We are appealing to anyone with information about this incident to contact the National Parks and Wildlife Service, the ISPCA or ourselves,” Donoher said.


Dr Andrew Kelly, CEO of the ISPCA, noted that wild birds such as Buzzards are protected under the Wildlife Act 1976, making it illegal to take them from the wild or injure or kill them.

“They feed on carrion and rodents such as rats so they pose no threat to farm animals or pets. Why such a beautiful bird would be targeted in this manner remains a mystery,” Kelly said.

This poor bird must have been in agony until it was found and given pain relief. Buzzards are magnificent birds and are an integral part of Ireland’s natural fauna. Although they are found mostly in the north and east of Ireland, they have been recolonizing other parts of the country over the last few years. They are scarce in the midlands where this one was shot.

In positive news, a second Buzzard was recently rescued by a member of the public in Lanesborough after being struck by a vehicle. It was brought to the National Animal Centre where the ISPCA rehabilitated the bird and safely re-released it back in the wild.

Buzzard3 Source: ISPCA

Buzzard5 Source: ISPCA

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About the author:

Órla Ryan

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