NEWPORT BEACH ( — Four birds have been wounded with blow darts recently in Newport Beach, and police need the public’s help to track down the shooter.

At least four birds – three Heermann’s gulls and a Mallard duck – have been found with blow darts through the neck, Newport Beach Police spokeswoman Jennifer Manzella said. Based on several recent calls about birds being injured with arrow-like projectiles, police believe there may be more injured birds in the area.

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(credit: Newport Beach Police Department)

(credit: Newport Beach Police Department)

The darts are orange and about 8 inches long. Police have determined that the projectiles used are most likely blow darts, shot from a blowgun.

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It is illegal to possess or use a blowgun and the darts.

The wounded birds can still fly, which has made it tough to animal control officers to retrieve them for treatment, Manzella said.

Anyone with information can call Animal Control Officer Nick Ott at (949) 644-3688, ext. 2716 or by email at Anonymous tips are welcome.

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