UPDATE: Hundreds of chicks put down as investigation continues

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  • Birds killed because of avian flu threat
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The RSPCA has confirmed that hundreds of chicks dumped in a Crowland field have now been put down.

Many of the thousand abandoned were initially saved but has to be killed because of the risk of avian flu.

Chicks abandoned in a Crowland field.

Chicks abandoned in a Crowland field.

IN a statement, the RSPCA said: “Very sadly, we have learned that the surviving chicks which were dumped in a field in Crowland on Friday have been put to sleep due to a case of avian flu nearby. We are sorry to hear of this outcome.

“The RSPCA’s investigation is ongoing and officers are following up several lines of enquiry. We would urge anyone with information to contact us on 0300 1238018.”

Previously: The RSPCA has launched an investigation after officers were called to a sea of day-old chicks abandoned in a field.

The animal welfare charity was called on Friday by members of the public who spotted around 1,000 little chicks running around Crowland.

Very sadly, we have learned that the surviving chicks which were dumped in a field in Crowland on Friday have been put to sleep due to a case of avian flu nearby

RSPCA spokesman

RSPCA inspector Justin Stubbs said: “I have never seen anything like it, it was just a sea of yellow. And the noise was unbelievable.

“The chicks are only about a day old and are really tiny and quite delicate. Some of the birds were dead or dying when we arrived so some, sadly, had to be humanely put to sleep.

“Thankfully, most of the chicks did not appear to be suffering.”

It is believed the chicks came from a commercial chick producer nearby and may have been abandoned by a third-party. The producer is fully cooperating and assisting the RSPCA with their investigations.

“The breeder came to the scene to collect the surviving birds and take them back to their unit,” Inspector Stubbs added.

“These tiny birds wouldn’t have survived long out on their own at such a young age and in such unpredictable weather conditions.

“For someone to dump these vulnerable chicks is unbelievable.

“But I’d like to thank all the members of the public who teamed together to help us round up all the birds and confine them in boxes where they could huddle together for warmth.”

Anyone with any information about who is responsible for dumping the birds is asked to contact the RSPCA’s inspector appeal line on 0300 1238018.

• To help the RSPCA continue rescuing, rehabilitating and rehoming animals in desperate need of care please visit www.rspca.org.uk/give or text LOVE to 87023 to give £3 (text costs £3 plus one standard network rate message).