Three men have been arrested and charged with hare coursing including an offence near Duns.
A 35-year-old from Edinburgh appeared at Edinburgh Sheriff Court on Thursday, March 10 in connection with five hare coursing offences committed between October 21 and February 3. Two of these offences took place in the North Berwick area, and one in the East Fortune area of East Lothian.
A further offence took place in the Pathhead area, and another in the Duns area of the Scottish Borders.
Two men, one aged 31 from Airdrie and the other aged 47, from Musselburgh, have also been charged and reported to the Procurator Fiscal under the Wildlife & Countryside Act (1981) in connection with the offences in Pathhead and Duns.
Officers are currently following lines of enquiry in the Falkirk and West Calder areas regarding further hare coursing incidents that took place in Pathhead and Gifford on November 11 and 23, 2015.
PC Jamie Hood, Divisional Wildlife Liaison Officer, said: “Hare coursing is a barbaric act and a terrifying death for an animal.
“It is currently the most prevalent form of wildlife crime in the Lothians and Borders, and we are committed to pursuing offenders regardless of the times and distances involved. Perpetrators are willing to travel considerable distances to take part in hare coursing and may be involved in other forms of criminality, such as the theft of agricultural machinery or equipment.
“With the assistance of our communities, we can bring offenders to justice. I’d urge the those who live, work or visit the countryside to continue to report any suspicious behaviour to us as soon as possible.”