An RSPCA appeal for information has been launched after three crows are believed to have been shot dead in Aberdare.

 The animal welfare charity was alerted after a member of the public found the crows – over two days – in a lane on East Avenue, behind a local funeral parlour last Wednesday (1 July) and Thursday (2 July).

One of the birds was found with blood pouring from the side of his head – while two others were also found dead at the location.

It is an offence to injure or kill a crow – except under licence – under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981.

An RSPCA officer collected a body – and found the crow with a bloodied wound, with brains visible. Veterinary inspection confirmed a pellet hole, and that it was highly likely the crow had been shot with an air rifle.

Carrion crows can be controlled in Wales under two general licences, but the RSPCA does not know whether these birds were shot under one of these licences. The RSPCA has therefore launched an appeal for information in the hope of deciphering what has happened. Anyone with information has been urged to contact their inspectorate appeal line.

RSPCA inspector Keith Hogben said: “Three dead crows have been found in Aberdare – and one had a bloodied wound in the head, which looks to have been caused by an air rifle pellet.

“We’re appealing for information in the hope someone can help explain what has happened. Anyone with any knowledge about the shooting of three crows on East Avenue on July 2 is urged to get in touch.

“The discovery of the three bodies has caused great distress to a member of the public – and we are eager to find out the circumstances behind the death of these birds. Our inspectorate appeal line can be reached on 0300 123 8018.”

 RSPCA officers remain on the frontline during the coronavirus pandemic, responding to animal welfare emergencies. Should you wish to help them with this work, you can donate online.