POLICE are investigating “continuing reports” of catapults being used to target wildlife in the Creekmoor area.

Poole Neighbourhood Policing Teams are investigating the reports and said offenders could be liable to prosecution.

A spokesperson said: “Whilst the possession of a catapult in public is not an illegal act, using it to kill, injure or take any wild bird is a criminal offence under section one of the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981.

“There are provisions to allow some people to kill or take a limited species of wild bird, under licence. The licence must be ‘used’ and ‘cited’ by the person doing this and they must have read it and are adhering to all the conditions. Otherwise, the licence does not exempt them from the criminal offence which they are committing.

“The law is clear that if someone is carrying a catapult with intent to cause injury he may be liable to prosecution under section one of the Prevention of Crime Act 1953 which makes it an offence to carry an offensive weapon in public without lawful authority or reasonable excuse.”