Were the Kersey ducks shot?

WHEN one of Suffolk's most beautiful villages suddenly lost all of its ducks, villagers feared it was the work of mink or foxes.

WHEN one of Suffolk's most beautiful villages suddenly lost all of its ducks, villagers feared it was the work of mink or foxes.

But it has now emerged the wholesale disappearance of Kersey's duck population - first revealed by the EADT earlier this month - could be a case of murder most fowl.

Police are investigating claims from worried villagers that a mystery gunman has wiped out their famous flock of ducks, which draw in visitors and tourists from across the country

It is thought by some the birds were killed because they wrecked flower beds and gardens. But a police spokesman said: "That's not an excuse - it is an offence to shoot a duck even in the wild. If anyone has any information that these ducks have been deliberately killed we would like to hear from them.”

For decades the birds, which had included 50 Muscovy ducks and ducklings, have been a feature of the stream that flows across the peaceful street in the middle of the tiny community.

But now all the birds have vanished and residents allege they have been deliberately shot because some people don't like the mess they leave and the damage they cause to gardens.

Most Read

Disappointed visitors William and Kay Drew had travelled 60 miles from their home in Norfolk to feed the Kersey ducks. “It is a real shame that there are no ducks anymore. We have been coming here for years and one of the highlights is to see the ducks splashing about in the water - the village has lost part of its character." said 63-year-old Mrs Drew.

Local farmer and district councillor Clive Arthey who was born in the village said: "It's a great shame - people want the ducks back.

"They have been a feature of the village and part of everyday life for more than half a century and have featured on postcards, calendars and even jigsaws.

"About ten or twelve years ago there was cull because some people claimed the birds had become a nuisance and left a mess. So some were rounded up and taken to a river a few miles away and released.

"Experts say that some of the ducks are Lavender Muscovys which are quite rare so it is possible they have been taken deliberately."

But one resident said: "There are very strong rumours that the birds have been deliberately shot because not everyone likes them. Some villagers think they are a nuisance and a menace and wreck gardens."

Parish council clerk Sarah Partridge said: "If the ducks want to come and live here in Kersey that's fine but they are wild birds and are also at risk from natural predators like foxes and mink."

Kersey Parish Council vice-chairman John Maltby said: "They have become part of the village but we have no control over them. They are wild creatures and you can't just round them up and say where they live."