Dozens of geese illegally shot in Wensleydale

One of the shot geese.

Police are appealing for information after dozens of geese were shot and apparently dumped in a river in Wensleydale.

Members of the public out walking reported finding around 25 dead adult and juvenile geese in the River Ure on June 16.

The Greylag geese were found in the river adjacent to the public right of way between Harper Wath footbridge near Aysgarth, and Worton.

Such were the numbers of dead geese, it was initially feared there could have been a large-scale wildlife poisoning incident.

However, on examination, it was found that the birds had recently been shot with a shotgun.

PC Julian Sutcliffe, of North Yorkshire Police, is the wildlife crime officer for Wensleydale and Swaledale.

He said: “Greylag geese can often be seen in the Dales meadows and rivers at this time of year.

“It is an offence under the Game Act 1831 and the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 to take or kill these birds during the closed season, which runs from 1 February to 31 August.

“We need to know how these birds came to be shot and apparently dumped in the river, and I would urge anyone with any information about this incident to contact me.”

 Anyone with information is asked to contact PC Julian Sutcliffe by calling North Yorkshire Police on 101, and selecting option 2, or emailing, and quote reference number 12180107689.