A West Sussex Wildlife Protection representative spoke of their disgust after a gull was shot dead in broad daylight in Littlehampton.
Sussex Police issued a statement that called for witnesses. It said: ‘Police were called just after midday on Sunday after a wounded herring gull was found in a Littlehampton garden.
‘It was taken to Brent Lodge Wildlife Hospital near Sidlesham but sadly died en route. It had a wound in its chest believed to have been caused by an air rifle pellet.’
Wildlife officer Sergeant Thomas Carter said: “All wild birds are protected within England with the exception of a few species as game birds within the shooting seasons.
“Killing any wild bird is an offence which can result in a fine and imprisonment. Anyone found illegally shooting birds also risks having their firearms or air weapons confiscated.
“Witnesses to this incident can email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 101 quoting reference 676 of 12/06.”
Jaine Wild from West Sussex Wildlife Protection said: “It is disgusting that someone has deliberately targeted this bird.
“Right now herring gulls have young in their nests and they make the most marvellous parents, with both adult birds feeding their young for a very long time. “The young bird can stay with parents for two years – they are attached to each other emotionally.”
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