An Angus woman has been left distraught after her lockdown pet ducks were decimated in the last three weeks.
Elspeth Fyfe, who lives near Arbroath, fears human intruders have stolen or killed the white ducks which were her pride and joy during the pandemic.
The 71-year-old bought them last year to join hens which she keeps at her rural home.
The waddling of ducks had been a huge source of pleasure during the Covid crisis – and delivered dozens of eggs.
But a few weeks’ ago Elspeth came out to their pen in her back garden to find three of the birds missing.
Another died of what she believes was shock.
And a week ago she discovered another duck covered in blood before it also died.
Last duck found badly hurt
She has now been forced to relocate her last remaining duck after discovering it badly injured on Wednesday morning.
“It had a huge mark on its neck and is completely traumatised,” said Elspeth.
And she is convinced it is human hands which have done the damage.
“We are devastated and feel sick” said the grandmother.
“The ducks were completely safe in their pen out here in the country.
“When avian flu came on the go we put netting all over the top of the pen and more fencing around it.
“There was no way in without opening the gate – nothing could get in from underneath or above.
“Even the wild birds weren’t able to get in.
“So I’m convinced it couldn’t have been a fox, a weasel or something like that.
“There were no feathers left lying in the pen and if they got in they’d tear them apart and leave a mess.”
Friendly and vocal
“We can’t believe someone could have done this,” Elspeth added.
“The grand-children loved the ducks and we’re all so upset.
“The ducks were really friendly and very vocal so it’s horrible this has happened.”
Elspeth has contacted police over the matter.
She said: “I just wanted other people who might have ducks or hens to know that this has happened and maybe keep an eye out for their birds.
Police Scotland said: “Officers received a report of the alleged theft of ducks from the garden of a property near Arbroath, which was reported around 8.35am on Wednesday, April 27.
“Enquiries are at an early stage.”
It turned out to be a triple-yolker.
British Egg Information experts say that although double yolk poultry eggs are not unusual, the odds of a triple are around 25,000,000:1.