Page last updated at 18:50 GMT, Tuesday, 23 December 2008

Mauled deer 'found at golf clubs'

Generic picture of a deer in woodland
The SSPCA said poachers are thought to have been using dogs to kill deer

A number of golf clubs in the Glasgow area have reported finding dead deer in their grounds, the Scottish SPCA said.

Clubs in Bearsden, Bishopbriggs and Milngavie said the animals had been found mauled to death, and in some instances, hanging from trees.

The SSPCA said deer poachers are thought to have been using lurcher type dogs to kill deer for sport.

It warned that anyone found guilty of hunting with dogs can face up to six months in jail, a 5,000 fine or both.

Tom Gatherer, from the SSPCA, said: "Using dogs to kill deer is cruel and callous and it is unthinkable in this day and age that people still consider this sport.

"The deer in these areas, although wild, are used to seeing people either out playing golf or walking their dogs so they may not have the same flight response as deer in remote areas.

"The people involved in this activity are getting easy pickings and it is deplorable."

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