Page last updated at 16:29 GMT, Wednesday, 31 March 2010 17:29 UK

Pesticide blamed for bird deaths at Wanstead Flats

Moorhen
About 70 birds of various species were found dead

The deaths of more than 80 birds and a pet dog were caused by an agricultural pesticide dumped at a wildlife spot, an investigation has revealed.

Samples taken from Wanstead Flats, east London, revealed high levels of a carbamate pesticide when examined by the Veterinary Laboratory Agency.

This class of pesticides is widely used by food producers to kill unwanted insects, fungus and weeds.

Police blocked off the area after a large number of birds were found dead.

A five-year German shepherd cross also died after being let off his leash for five minutes in the area, which included Alexandra Lake.

Two men from Forest Gate, aged 35 and 27, suspected of deliberately dumping the pesticide have been questioned and released on bail until the end of April.

Officers from the Met Police Wildlife Crime Unit, assisted by colleagues from Natural England, continue to investigate the poisoning.

The Health Protection Agency has said there is no further risk to the public or animals and the cordons around the lake have been taken down.



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