Case closed due to "Lack of Evidence"

Steve Round's stunning photo of the equally stunning Hen Harrier

In our last blog we gave you the news of the two Hen Harriers shot dead at Dresingham Bog, close to the Sandringham estate in Norfolk and we said we would keep you up dated with any further developments in the case.

Sadly, the same story has hit the news again this week, but for a very different reason!
It now seems that there is a "lack of evidence" to pursue that matter further which is terribly disappointing for both conservationists and raptor enthusiasts.

The news has also been greeted with grave disappointment by the RSPB. Commenting on the official statement released by the Crown Prosecution Service, the RSPB's Conservation Director Dr Mark Avery said: 'We regard the killing of Hen Harriers as one of the most serious of wildlife crime offenses. We would always hope that people killing Hen Harriers be brought to justice (and that) their illegal killing is the reason for this bird's low UK population, especially in England where only 20 pairs remain.'

Continuing, he said: 'Despite a thorough and swift investigation by the Norfolk Constabulary, the RSPB is disappointed there is insufficient evidence to proceed with the investigation. However, we don't want the death of these two harriers to be completely in vain. At a time when the one-year old National Wildlife Crime Unit faces a funding crisis and police forces are abolishing dedicated wildlife crime investigation posts, we would like assurances that the investigation of wildlife crime offenses will be fully investigated. Operation Artemis - the police operation to protect the Hen Harrier - needs to be properly resourced, tasked and supported by police and Natural England.

If you feel as strongly as we do at S.O.S. about this tragedy and the lack of funding to protect all our native wildlife, then why not post us a comment voicing your opinion and we will see that it is delivered to the relevant officials.

If you would like to know more about this story from an 'insiders' point of view, then why not click on these links to discover more!

Mark Thomas, Investigations Officer, has written about the RSPB's involvement in the case and you can also watch a video comment from Mark Avery about the recent events at Sandringham.