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Last Updated: Monday, 1 October 2007, 15:40 GMT 16:40 UK
Poisoning worry over bird of prey
Red kite
Some estates view the red kite as a threat to game birds
Tests have been carried out on a rare bird of prey to establish if it was poisoned.

Wildlife experts at the Scottish SPCA in Dunfermline, Fife, said the red kite was being nursed back to health.

The bird, which is a protected species, was found in a distressed state under a window in Dunblane on Thursday. Early indications suggested it was poisoned.

Only about 430 pairs of red kites exist in the UK. Some estates have viewed them as a threat to game birds.

There has been an increase recently in the number of rare birds being poisoned, according to the wildlife charity.

A spokesperson told the BBC Scotland news website: "Sporting estates view them as a threat to some of the game birds.

"Putting out poison is illegal. It should not happen at all."

Toxicology tests

Red kites are one of the UK's rarest birds and were re-established to parts of Scotland after virtual extinction.

The ill bird was carrying a tag to identify it as one which had been reintroduced.

It has been given a charcoal compound to prevent toxins reaching its vital organs. A process of rehydration has also been carried out and the bird is making a good recovery.

Toxicology samples have been taken and scientists said they were waiting on results.

In August, a red kite was found poisoned with fertiliser on the edge of the Glenturret Estate near Crieff.

Third red kite poisoned to death
22 Aug 07 |  Tayside and Central
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24 Jul 07 |  Tayside and Central
Funding boost for Red Kite scheme
11 Jun 07 |  North East/N Isles

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