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Thursday, July 19, 2012

Is this the hardest seagull in Wales? Injured bird carries on flying despite having crossbow lodged in its side

By Daily Mail Reporter

A seagull has been named after 100m Olympic champion Usain Bolt after being spotted with crossbow bolt lodged in its side.

The injured bird was caught flying around on the rooftops of Cardiff with the spear sticking out of its body.

Although brave Usain survived the attack sightings of the bird has raised concerns that there may be a crossbow ‘maniac’ in the area.

Bird Bolt: After being spotted with the crossbow bolt lodged in its side the tough bird has been nicknamed Usain after the Olympic champion

The seagull survivor caught the eye of local bird-lover Phil Thomas, 58, who spotted the gull flying around the Canton suburb of Cardiff.

Retired scientist Mr Thomas said: ‘Usain is still alive but it’s clearly injured.

‘I’ve spotted it a few times over the last week it seems to be staying in the vicinity of the same four buildings and only coming down to feed when the road is a bit quieter.’

‘It is sad to think of the suffering of the bird but it is also really quite dangerous.

Although concerned about Usain and fellow flying friends, Mr Thomas raised a more serious question – that there is someone firing a crossbow in a residential area.

‘What concerns me is that there’s some maniac who has a crossbow and is quite prepared to shoot it in an urban area.

‘There are several schools nearby and it doesn’t bear thinking about if the shooter was to miss - it really would be a bolt out of the blue for anyone.’

Survivor: Usain the seagull is miraculously still alive after being shot with a crossbow in Cardiff, Wales

Rear-view: Locals report that although Usain is flying around the rooftops of Cardiff itr is clearly injured by the spear in his side

The RSPCA said there are often reports of attacks on seagulls - but air rifle shooting more often common than cross bows.

A spokesman said: ‘It is a very cruel thing to do and we will try to help the bird if it is spotted again.’

The Royal Society for the Protection of Birds said the crossbow culprit could be prosecuted if caught.

Spokesman Daniel Jenkins said: ‘All wild birds are protected in law including gulls.

‘This is particularly sad because people don’t realise that our gulls are in decline.

‘Most people will say they’re always in my back garden - but the fact of the matter is that species such as the herring gull are red listed in the UK as endangered.

‘Their numbers have dropped by more than 50 per cent since the 1970s.’



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