A group made up of police, land managers, conservationists and the Scottish Government unveiled its latest hotspot map last week, giving the number of incidents of birds of prey poisonings in Scotland between January 2006 and December 2010, reports Will Finch.

The figures, released by the Partnership for Action Against Wildlife Crime in Scotland (PAW), show that 28 birds were poisoned last year, one more than in 2009, including 13 buzzards, seven red kites and four golden eagles. Poisonings involving peregrine falcons, sparrowhawks and sea eagles were also reported.

Most of the 132 incidents over the entire five-year period were investigated by the Northern Constabulary, though the Scottish Government said that exact locations of incidents are not shown ?in recognition of the fact that birds may travel some distance after exposure to the poison?.

Doug McAdam, chief executive of the Scottish Rural Property and Business Association said: ?We have seen good progress in areas where there is a healthy partnership working, such as Grampian, where in 2010, there were no cases of illegal poisoning.

The rest of this article appears in 23rd March issue of Shooting Times.

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