LLISWERRY Pond in Newport was the site of a spate of vandalism and animal cruelty - all in less than 12 hours.

Two ducks, a pigeon and a coot were found shot dead at the pond - and it is believed the crime took place between 5pm on Monday, February 28, and 7.30am Tuesday, March.

The RSPCA is investigating the incident.

At the same time, a group vandalised a small boat and set fire to a nearby bin.

Ben Edmunds, who helps to run the pond with Leanne Tutton and Angling Watch UK, believes that is all the work of the same group who he has had run-ins with in the past.

Mr Edmunds said: "We will not tolerate vandalism and cruelty to animals.

"We are absolutely disheartened by it.

"We've got more supporters than people against us on this matter, the council, the RSPCA and the police are all involved.

"I will not stop until the people who have done this are caught."

Normally, the boat is chained up with a motorbike chain, but the vandals had brought a spanner and took off the part of the boat that was secured.

Mr Edmunds believes that the group collected dead animals from the water as there are "a lot of ducks missing".

Most heartbreakingly, one of the ducks killed was donated to the pond, mated with a wild duck and had eggs.

The eggs are in an incubator and will be introduced to the pond when other ducks have their young.

Another coot was injured and is currently being cared for before it is returned to the pond.

"We do everything we can to protect the wildlife here" said Mr Edmunds.

"The wildlife are more important than the anglers!

"It just breaks my heart to see what we found yesterday."


Mr Edmunds wants a fence to be installed at the pond to stop incidents like this from happening after people leave the site at 5pm.

He said: "In the winter months we're here from 8am until 4pm or 5pm, and in the summer months, we're pretty much here from 6am until 8pm.

"In the winter after 8pm it's pretty much a free-for-all.

"Our plan is to get a fence up so we can lock it when we go at 8pm and only members with a key can access it.

"It'll be open for the public in the day to come in and see the wildlife, but we feel that most of the anti-social behaviour is happening when we're not here."

However, the fence would cost arounf £19,000 - money that would take several years to raise alone.

Most money is raised through membership fees, but there is other work needed to be done around the pond such as improving footpaths and creating spaces for disabled anglers to fish safely.