OUTRAGED animal lovers are waging war on yobs using air rifles to take pot shots at wildlife.
They have been shocked to find scores of dead rabbits and hedgehogs on the green space known as Macon Meadows, off Macon Way, Crewe.
Workers from Macon Court business park are patrolling the area in search of the shooters.
Spokeswoman Sam Bradley, 25, said: 'I have lost count of the number of rabbits I have seen lying dead around here.
'One morning someone found eight or nine just lying shot. And it is not just rabbits, if there are hedgehogs around they will shoot them.
'We think it is kids because the problem has got much worse now they are holiday.
'The same thing happened last year and we can't just sit back and let this cruel practice continue.'
Sam, a sales co-ordinator, has been in regular contact with police.
She said: 'There is a group of five of us and we are taking it in turns to patrol the area. I have been coming down here at five in the morning, but I have just found little creatures lying dead from the previous night.
'Now we are going to concentrate on the evening, when most of it is happening.
'Just the other day we had to take a wounded rabbit to the RSPCA. It had a lead shot wedged in its spine and unfortunately it had to be put down.
'How can anyone leave a defenceless creature to die a slow and painful death like that?'
A spokesman for Crewe Police said: 'We want to emphasise the dangers of using air rifles.
'Anyone who uses them and causes criminal damage or an offence of cruelty to animals will be prosecuted.
'We are appealing for parents to consider what access to airguns their children have.
'Lots of children and animals get injured with airguns. They are dangerous weapons and should be treated with great caution.'