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Religious ritual could be behind headless cocks left in river mouth

Picture of the dead birds in the Guadalhorce estuary.
Picture of the dead birds in the Guadalhorce estuary. / SUR
  • The lifeless birds were found by an early-morning walker at the Guadalhorce estuary and he says it is not the first time he has seen similar things

A local resident out on his early-morning walk has made a macabre discovery in one of the channels of water at the mouth of the Guadalhorce river in Malaga.

Around a dozen recently decapitated cocks were floating in the water, with traces of blood in the sand and on stones. The remains of the heads were nearby.

All the evidence points to the animals being brought to the shore early in the morning and slaughtered in a ritual sacrifice, possibly as part of a religious belief.

"It's very unsavoury to come across a scene like that," said Sergio, who had passed by on his walk the night before and seen nothing.

It's not the first time Sergio has come across something similar. "Once my dog was rummaging in some bushes and when I got closer there was a crucified cat." He added he has also seen chickens and rings of candles.

The La Protectora animal charity in Malaga has harshly criticised these types of sacrifice. The association's president, Carmen Manzano, speaking to SUR, pointed out that they are classified as mistreating animals and police action should be taken.

"For the time being we have no knowledge that this type of ritual is being carried out in the Guadalhorce estuary, but we want to let you know that we will be reporting it," she said. She added that if anyone has any information about what has happened, they can get in touch with the charity.

Manzano added that a few years ago similar evidence of ritual killings was found on Malaga's Gibralfaro hill, in the centre of the city.

Walkers have also recently found evidence of possible ritualistic statues while out walking on the Gibralfaro.