Porcupine remains, animal cages found in Hong Kong’s Tai Tam Country Park
- Police are treating it as a case of animal cruelty
The severed head and paw of a porcupine, along with its internal organs, were found scattered on a slope in a Hong Kong country park on Monday, prompting a criminal investigation.
Two animal cages were also found near the grisly scene.
Apples used as bait were found inside the cages which were discovered by hikers in Tai Tam Country Park off Hong Pak Path in Quarry Bay shortly before 1.30pm.
One witness told the Post that the apples appeared to be fresh, suggesting that the two animal cages – 1 metre long and 30cm high – had been newly set up.
Describing the scene as “horrible”, she said: “A porcupine head and paw were dumped on the slope along with [its] internal organs and some bones … a short distance away from the two cages.
“Its flesh with spikes was also found on the branches of a nearby tree.”
The witness said the adult porcupine was probably slaughtered there, but it was not known if the animal had been caught in one of the traps.
One of the cages was still set while the other was deactivated as its opening mechanism was closed, she said.
Police were treating the case as “cruelty to an animal”. So far, no one has been arrested.
At about 4pm, police and officers from the Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) were searching the slope to see if there were other animal traps.
The location was just a short distance away from the site of a wire trap that caught a stray dog on Sunday evening.
An SPCA spokeswoman said the mongrel ran off after being freed by officers. She said the site had been on the list of black spots as animal traps had been found there over the past two years.
On the slope is a warning sign saying “No hunting of wild animals”, posted by the Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department. The sign states that illegal hunting of wild animals carries a maximum penalty of one year in prison and a fine of HK$100,000 (US$12,800) under the Wild Animals Protection Ordinance.
The SPCA spokeswoman said the society found 61 animal traps, including gin traps, cages and snake traps, across the city last year.
In Hong Kong, cruelty to animals carries a maximum penalty of three years in jail and a fine of up to HK$200,000.