Wimbledon hawk cage 'sighting' prompts search
Published: 1st Jul 2012 10:52:44
The cage of the Wimbledon tennis hawk stolen from a parked car has been spotted abandoned in a hedge, said the bird's owner.
Imogen Davies said the cage manufacturer had been contacted by someone who said they had seen the travel box with a bird inside.
Rufus the hawk is used to scare away pigeons at the tennis tournament in south-west London.
He was stolen from Dunstall Road, Wimbledon, on Thursday night.
Ms Davies said a search would be carried out.
She said the manufacturer, Falcon Fabrication, had been contacted by somebody calling from a public phone box in Southfields, south-west London.
She received the news on Saturday night.
So far, she said, the cage had not been located.
She said: "It definitely gives us hope. We are going to be out in force looking for it."
The four-year-old harris hawk is used to scare pigeons away from roosting on the roof of Centre Court in the mornings before spectators arrive.
This year for the first time, he was kept overnight in a parked car instead of being driven from Corby in Northamptonshire each day for his 05:30 BST start.
Asked how often he needs to be fed, Ms Davies said: "When we fly him he is fed a few times daily. He mainly eats quail or chicken but he would eat any meat.
"He would certainly be getting hungry."
Rufus's travel box is large and black and mainly covered to help him to sleep.
A falconry glove and hood were also stolen.
Officers from Wimbledon CID are investigating the theft.
Meanwhile, a spokesman for the All England Lawn Tennis Club said that one of Rufus's "pals", Hector, had been drafted in so there was no increased risk of pigeons becoming a nuisance on Centre Court.
Harvard CitationBBC News, 2012. Wimbledon hawk cage 'sighting' prompts search. [Online] (Updated 01 Jul 2012)
Available at: http://www.manchesterwired.co.uk/news.php/1437934-Wimbledon-hawk-cage-sighting-prompts-search [Accessed 17th May 2013]
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