A mum was shocked to discover a dead pheasant left by the roadside in a plastic bag while walking her children to school.

Sophie Turkentine, 33, was walking to Holy Trinity Primary School when she made the grim discovery in New Street, Halstead, this morning.

Luckily her two children were walking in the park and did not see the bag, which also contained another dead bird.

The mum-of-five, of Mitchell Avenue, said: “It is not nice, the poor thing was lying there in the carrier bag.

“It is not like there are fields there, there are some quite close but someone has walked along and dropped it, it is bizarre.

“It didn’t look as if a cat had got to it, it was in good condition.

“Luckily my kids were in the park but I noticed a few others going past it and saying ‘mum.’ “I want to try and shift it before they finish school.”

Miss Turkentine was not sure who to call about the birds and so had initially decided to go and buy rubber gloves to remove them herself.

On the way to the shops she called at Halstead Town Council offices where staff called Braintree Council.

Under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 pheasants are classed as game birds and it is illegal to kill them between February 1 and October 1, and also on Sundays or Christmas Day.