Teenagers using catapults to kill birds

Birds are being catapulted to death and a wild Canada goose was barbecued in Nottinghamshire.

Police said officers will be on patrol to catch those responsible after one youngster was caught in the middle of aiming a slingshot at a group of songbirds.

Officers recently received six reports that dead birds had been found by members of the public in the Balderton and Barnby areas, all of which had injuries consistent with catapults.

There were also concerns that youths were being abusive to members of the public.

Anthony Nicholson, 82, who lives opposite Balderton Lake, said: "My wife and I have had to bury so much of the wildlife.

"Only the other week, we found two carp and a wild Canada goose which appeared to have been barbecued."

He continued: "[One day] we went down and found the big white duck, which is a bird that people were absolutely besotted with, with its neck snapped.

"There was also a Canada goose which had had its chest split open and numerous mallard ducks with pellets in the heads.

"A couple of mallards were suspected to have been tortured and burned. It's disgraceful."

Newark police set up a plain-clothed operation with uniformed officers to catch those destroying the wildlife in the area.

A teenager, 15, was located using a catapult on Sustrans, Catkin Way, Balderton and was just about to fire it at some local song birds. He was detained and the catapult was seized.

He will now be dealt with by the Youth Justice Service for a number of wildlife offences.

Three youths were also detained in the Blue Lake area of Barnby Gate after plain-clothed officers witnessed them chasing ducks and geese and behaving anti-socially. They were all spoken with.