AN animal shelter owner has expressed her outrage after one of the much-loved 'Maryport peacocks' was killed when it was hit by a car.

Mel James, who owns the Ani-Mel Haven animal rescue sanctuary, has said she is 'disgusted' after the bird was killed in what is thought to have been an intentional incident.

The 'Maryport peacocks' are domestic birds, kept locally, which can often be found roaming the Ewanrigg area of the town.

Mel got a phonecall to say that one of the peacocks had been hit on the road at Maryport on Friday; a witness believing that the bird had been intentionally struck.

After looking for the bird, Mel picked the Maryport peacock up from a garden in the town on Sunday afternoon. He sadly died that night from a number of injuries.

Mel said: "It's disgusting, I know they make a racket, I know they make a noise and truthfully I know that a housing estate isn't the perfect place for peacocks, but the amount of people that like seeing them there, they're something different.

"To hit any animal intentionally is absolutely disgusting, there is no need for it at all."

Mel said that there is 'too much cruelty' going on towards animals at the minute, with her sanctuary receiving seagulls that have been shot.

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She said: "It's people like me that are picking up the pieces; I'm getting the birds that are being brought in with pellets in their bodies.

"It's not the physical damage that they are leaving, it's the mental and emotional damage."

Mel urged anyone with any information on the incident to 'come forward and do the right thing' by giving information.

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