‘They’re watching us’

Craig Machen and Sammy Sambrook have being targeted by people repeatedly killing and stealing their ducklings and chicks on Wakefield road allotments, Fetherstone
Craig Machen and Sammy Sambrook have being targeted by people repeatedly killing and stealing their ducklings and chicks on Wakefield road allotments, Fetherstone

WORRIED allotment owners in Featherstone fear they are being deliberately targeted after a spate of vicious attacks on baby ducks and chickens.

Craig Machen, 28, was horrified to discover birds at his Wakefield Road allotment had been massacred for the second time in a month.

Mr Machen, of Verner Street, Featherstone, said: “It’s getting worse, they’re targeting everyone. In the incident last week they killed two ducklings. They bashed them over the head and struck a metal spike through their heads. We showed the RSCPA and they couldn’t believe it. The birds were only three weeks old.

“The next day three of us stopped at the allotments from 10pm until 8.15am. Then I went to get my children ready for school and by the time I got back at about 9am there were another four birds missing.

“It’s as though they’re watching us. We can be there all night, then we’ll go get a cup a tea, and ten or 15 minutes later, they’ve already been in and killed the birds.”

Last month, the dad-of-three discovered several baby chickens had been trampled into the ground.

He said: “I’ve got three children and they come to the allotment to help me with the ducks and they’ve seen what’s happened. How do you stop them from being upset?

“Half the time I don’t want to go to the allotment. When I take the children, I have to make sure they stop outside so I can check everything first. I feel as though I should just pack it in, I’ve had enough. It’s horrible.”

Fellow allotment owner, Sammy Sambrook, 25, gave up his allotment a month ago following several attacks on his pets.

He said: “I’ve had enough of people breaking in, I’m sick of them killing my animals. I didn’t want to get rid of it, but I’ve just had enough.”

Mr Machen said he had contacted Wakefield Council to ask for more security at the site.

Glynn Humphries, service director for the council’s cleaner and greener department, said: “Improvements had recently been made to the fencing around the site but we will be seeing if there is anything else we can do.”

Sgt Andy Loftus of Featherstone and Normanton neighbourhood policing team said the incidents were under investigation and anyone with information should contact them on 01924 295453.