Thank you Sandringham

This from the BTO website:

One of our Goshawks began automatically reporting its position soon after leaving its nest in Thetford Forest on 23 July 2016. Over the following few weeks it visited Narborough, Roydon Common and the Sandringham area. The bird was reported to BTO by Sandringham Estate as having been found dead on 9 August, and the tag was returned to the BTO intact. The bird may have died from natural causes, but currently the circumstances surrounding this bird’s death remain unclear. BTO has sought further details in the hope of clarifying how this bird died.


The BTO’s Patron is married to the Queen.


23 Replies to “Thank you Sandringham”

  1. Maybe Harry has been around


    Thank you all – keep them coming!

    1. Jan – I know no more than what this piece of text says – but it isn’t clear what happened to the body.

    1. The article says that the grouse were being driven by dozens of soldiers! Is this really a good use of our armed forces?

  2. The final sentence has been changed, it now reads:

    “The police are currently investigating and we are unable to comment further at this stage.”

  3. Rightly or wrongly given the heightened profile of illegally persecuted raptors failure to release cause of death will only fuel speculation?

    But, open and transparent conduct is to be applauded? Just a shame it doesn’t extend across the whole ‘membership’* of involvement in the issue?

    * ie not BTO but the parties causing the raised profile.

  4. Gos had a hard time getting going at Thetford: they produced a lot of young in the early 80s but didn’t increase the breeding population. We also then had trouble with egg thieves stealing for falconry. I felt that the likely reason was that young were dispersing out of the forest and getting killed at pheasant pens in this heavily shot part of the country. However, they did eventually get away and the population has increased to several pairs.

  5. hadn’t realised that patron of the BTO was Phillip of Greece, famed bird killer and huntsman. Lost some respect for the BTO, sadly.

  6. Looking at the graph on the BTO site showing what young Goshawks are fed, I’m surprised the shooting fraternity aren’t encouraging them for all their worth!
    And yes, I hope the BTO get a new patron very soon, though quite how they’d phrase it, I don’t know. “Push off, old lad, we’ve had enough of you!”?

  7. Why on earth would you go to the trouble of removing the tag and not return the whole bird?
    The only reasons I can imagine all involve illegal activity and I won’t be the only one thinking that, will I?

      1. Presumably the data on the tag will enable the BTO to determine when the bird stopped moving and therefore the time between death and discovery. If it was discovered freshly dead then you would have to question why the corpse wasn’t retained for analysis…

    1. There are probably laws against sending corpses by mail, and sticking the image of the Monarch on a corpse

          1. Yes this stinks of a cover up. I would expect the tag data would confirm exactly when it died and when it was picked up. I’m intrigued to know what data the BTO have from the other birds as there is no mention of the other 4????

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