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Last Updated: Thursday, 24 March, 2005, 12:17 GMT
Second mutilated otter discovered
A second mutilated otter has been discovered in Cornwall within the space of a fortnight.

Environmentalists in the county said they were shocked and described the incident as "bizarre".

The animal, which had its tail and a leg hacked off, was found by a roadside near Callington on Tuesday.

It is not clear how the otter died, but the Cornwall Wildlife Trust said it believed that the leg and tail were cut off to be taken as trophies.

'Real shock'

Otters are relatively rare and protected by law. The South West's network of waterways, many undisturbed, provides an ideal habitat.

After the last mutilation, the Cornwall Wildlife Trust said it was a "wholly unacceptable practice".

Kate Stokes of the trust said: "We had real shock to find another such case. After the press coverage of the last one, we're surprised that people still want to do that.

"It is just bizarre, and begs the question of who would want to chop off its tail in this day and age."

The incident was reported to the police, the trust said.

Otters are popular with most people, but not all because they sometimes find easy prey at fish farms where ornamental carp can be worth hundreds of pounds.

The county has seen a series of attacks on otters in recent months.

As well as the previous mutilation, they have included one being found dead after it was thrown off a cliff at Perranporth, one being shot near Hayle and an otter pelt was found hanging on a fence near Looe.

Otter's tail cut off for trophy
10 Mar 05 |  Cornwall
Tunnel plan to curb otter deaths
31 Jan 05 |  Cornwall


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