Peak District gamekeepers played key role in helping police catch Yorkshire and Derbyshire egg thief

Gamekeepers are said to have played an instrumental role in helping officers catch a man who had been illegally stealing birds from nests in Yorkshire and Derbyshire.

Saturday, 8th August 2020, 11:54 am

Baby birds were released back into the wild in Huddersfield on Tuesday, August 4 following reports that they bad been stolen from their nests and mothers in Yorkshire and Derbyshire earlier this year.

Three golden plover and one curlew hatched after police found them in an thief’s incubator, who was also in possession of more than 200 birds’ eggs.

Gamekeepers from two grouse moors on the northern fringe of the Peak District, tracked the suspect, who had been seen taking eggs from wild birds’ nests and reported him to officers.

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Gamekeepers are said to have played a 'key role' in helping to catch a thief who had stolen baby birds from nests in Yorkshire and Derbyshire.

A 63-year-old man has since been arrested on suspicion of offences under Section 1 of the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981, which protects the nests and eggs of wild birds.

One keeper said: “We spotted this man out on the moor and he was acting pretty strangely.

"We reported him to the police who asked us to watch his movements and when he returned for a third time over a quite a period of weeks, the police got hold of him.

"We’re delighted that four birds have been saved.”

The stolen chicks were released back into their natural habitat on Tuesday, August 4.

The eggs from the incubator were taken to a nursery in Thorgumbald, East Yorkshire, where they were kept until they hatched.

Coordinator of the Peak District Moorland Group Richard Bailey said: “The keepers involved deserve the highest praise.

"Their actions have prevented further danger to wildlife which they work so hard to preserve on the moors.”

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