Above: Colin Leask at the 2018 Budgerigar Society Club Show. He believes the break-in of his birdroom occurred between the evening of September 19 and early September 21
A SCOTTISH BIRD-THEFT victim is warning fellow birdkeepers to limit what they post on social media after his birdroom was looted by thieves.
Colin Leask, owner of All Creatures Health Check, from West Fife, believes someone on a Facebook birdkeeping page saw his post regarding his son’s wedding on September 20 and, knowing Mr Leask would be away from his house, took the opportunity to break in to his birdroom.
Two weeks prior to the incident, Mr Leask had just bought 10 pairs of exhibition zebra finches, mainly fawn pied. Those birds, along with three pairs of exhibition Scots fancy canaries and approximately 61 exhibition budgerigars of all colours, have been stolen.
Speaking to Cage & Aviary Birds, 53-year-old Mr Leask said: “The birdroom door was open and the birds were gone. I shut the door, waited a few seconds and opened it up again, but the birdroom was still empty.
“Padlocks only stop honest people getting in. Whoever stole my birds came prepared. They left minimal damage inside the birdroom but had prised open the doors to my birdroom and garage.”
In the final week leading up to his son’s wedding, Mr Leask was away from his property, but on every day he returned to feed and water the birds. He believes someone watched his movements, knowing that the house would be empty on the day of the wedding.
Mr Leask said: “The most annoying thing is that I inadvertently advertised online that my house would be empty. Someone saw this and used that time-frame to break in.”
He continued: “I don’t want sympathy; I want to warn other fanciers not to be complacent on social media.
“Only recently on the same Facebook page has someone posted his address to a potential buyer of birds. I hate the thought that I was on a social media page specifically for likeminded birdkeepers and someone else had access to it.”
The police have been informed of the theft.
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