Dog owners visiting Dunfermline’s Pittencrieff Park have been urged to keep their pets on leads amid fears the town’s beloved peacocks could be killed.
Peacocks have lived in The Glen since 1905 when the philanthropist Henry Beveridge returned to his hometown of Dunfermline from India, bringing with him the beautiful birds, which have had the freedom of the town ever since.
However, volunteers at the popular park’s peacock aviary have raised concerns about the number of dogs chasing the birds, putting the birds in danger of being attacked and potentially affecting their general health as a result of the ordeal.
Video on this story is above this article
Volunteer peacock warden Amie Boyle said: “As dog owners ourselves, we have absolutely no problem with dogs in the glen.
“But we are keen to encourage everyone to be vigilant around the aviary, to avoid any distress being caused to the peacocks.
“Run-ins with dogs can be really frightening for the birds. So taking the simple step of making sure your dog is on a lead can make a huge difference.”
Dunfermline and West Fife MSP, Shirley-Anne Somerville, has taken up the issue after hearing more from the aviary’s volunteers, and called on dog walkers to exercise caution and ensure their dogs are kept under control.
“The Glen wouldn’t be the same without the peacocks,” she stressed.
“We all have a responsibility to ensure that it is a safe home for them. Being chased by dogs can be a really traumatic experience for peacocks.
“Some of them are actually frightened to go out into the park due to bad experiences with dogs in the past.
“Keeping dogs under control can have a direct impact on the wellbeing of the peacocks. When near the aviary, I’d urge all dog owners to keep their dogs on leads.
“The volunteers looking after the birds are doing an incredible job, and we all owe them our thanks.
“I’d encourage local residents to visit and learn more about the work that goes into looking after the glen’s famous residents.”