Looking out for Scotland's birds of prey

October 2013 Hidden behind some trees in a forest on an Angus shooting estate a raptor trap has been discovered. By the trap was a pair of pliers and several dozen plastic ties. There was also some wire and the evidence at the scene suggested that the trap was being modified and prepared for use.

Along from this trap were snares and outside of the forest, partridge had not long been released from their pens. If this trap were to have been used then its target species would most definitely have been raptors.

As you can see in the photos there is a compartment below the main trapping area where live bait would have been placed, such as white doves or pigeons. Sadly, old feathers were found stuck to the compartment where the live birds would have been placed so we can assume that the trap has already been active. The trap that was discovered, as well as the image of the same trap, only prepared and set with live bait, are both closed. When active and in full operation the netted trap section will be open and set on a spring trigger mechanism.

Police Scotland (Tayside) acted promptly after we informed them of the trap and it has now been removed.

This is a trap which isn’t often seen in the Scottish countryside, but we will now be adding it to our long list of methods that are used to unlawfully capture and kill raptors and asking all those that walk the hills and forests to keep an eagle eye out for this illegal trap along with all the rest. 

The grid reference where the trap was discovered is: NO 38619 63909