THERE was outrage in East Ilsley after it emerged that three ducks on the village duck pond had been shot dead.
It is thought the killings, at the end of March, might have been carried out as part of a cull.
However, the identity of the gunman is unknown and East Ilsley Parish Council, which is responsible for maintaining the pond, says it did not give authority for the shootings and has reported the matter to Thames Valley Police.
The pond, in the centre of the village, is a popular area for picnics with children regularly feeding the ducks.
Residents were quick to condemn the killings on Facebook.
Ali Allan posted: “This is terrible, they are [were] part of the village, surely there could have been another way rather than this scenario... hope there were no children around to witness it.”
Patricia Ann Burnett-Crockford posted: “How has any one got the right to do this in a public place, there are other ways, like a wild life sanctuary etc. I find this very upsetting.”
Parish council chairman Roger Hick posted a statement saying that the actions were not authorised by the council.
“We have made the legal services team at West Berkshire Council aware and have also spoken with Thames Valley Police. As soon as we have a clear direction as a result of these contacts we will take whatever action is necessary and will provide the village with a fully detailed report.”
It is believed that the issue of the ducks causing a problem in the pond had been discussed at a previous meeting of the parish council, however no decisions had been made.
A parish council spokesman said: “It may have been brought up as a future item for discussion but it certainly wasn’t on the agenda at any point and hasn’t been discussed formally.”
West Berkshire Council spokesman Martin Dunscombe said: “Last month East Ilsley Parish Council informed us that several aggressive ducks on the village pond had been killed and sought our advice.
“There was nothing in the information provided to suggest this is a matter for West Berkshire Council, particularly as the incident had already been referred to the police to consider the matter.”
Thames Valley Police could not confirm any details of the incident or that it had been reported before the Newbury Weekly News went to press.