Man allegedly rips off heads of two pigeons using bare hands

Two pigeons killed in Norwich city centre

Police were called after eyewitnesses say they saw a man rip off the heads of two pigeons - Credit: Team Pigeon

A man allegedly ripped off the heads of two pigeons using his bare hands.

The pigeons were left in a pool of blood on Tuesday afternoon near the war memorial at Norwich market to the horror of onlookers.

The police are investigating the incident, which happened at about 2pm. 

Jenny Coupland, who runs Team Pigeon, a pigeon welfare group who helps care for injured pigeons in the city, said: "I was walking along the War Memorial Gardens and came across two decapitated pigeons.

"I could tell instantly that these birds had been deliberately killed by a person, not a gull or sparrow hawk.

"They lay there, in pools of fresh blood so I knew it had happened very recently.

"I found several witness and called the police to report this horrific wildlife crime. They said that he intentionally lured them over with his chips.

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"These poor young pigeons were not long out of the nest, looking for scraps of food and not yet learnt to fend for themselves."

 Norfolk Police have said they are investigating the incident and their enquiries are ongoing.

Ms Coupland, from Norwich, has been helping injured pigeons for 15 years, and started Team Pigeon two years ago after seeing so many hurt and disabled pigeons in the city.

Ms Coupland added: "Its not about whether or not you like pigeons, this is animal abuse. 

"Pigeons are unfairly seen as dirty creatures. They saved thousands of lives during WWII , they understand time and space, differentiate between written words and see in a superior light spectrum.

"They are great little birds full of character and don't deserve the ill-treatment and disregard they receive.

According to Ms Coupland, feral pigeons suffer regular injuries due to getting caught up in building netting and human waste, which often results in their toes and feet being damaged. This causes pain and infection, which sometimes leads to their toes falling off.

Ms Coupland said: "The way that we treat pigeons is disgusting. We seem them as less than but you'd never do that to any other bird." 

Anyone with information should call Norfolk police on 101.