Litter picker's horror as he finds dead kittens dumped at roadside in Northern Ireland
The bodies of two newborn kittens have been found cruelly dumped just yards from a council estate in Newtownards, Co Down.
Andy Kedziora (62) came across the gruesome sight on Monday morning when he was collecting litter from Talbot Street, outside the Glen Estate in the town.
The tiny black and white siblings were abandoned on a grass verge, at the side of the road, which is also metres from Ards Leisure Centre and Londonderry Primary School.
Andy said that he had first thought the tiny kittens were discarded refuse and only realised on closer inspection that they were not.
Animal lover Andy, who has a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel named Charlie, a German Shepherd called Alfie, and a parrot named Rudy, said it was a "horrible" thing to come across.
He said: "There were not hidden, they were just lying there as if someone had slung them from a car window - anyone could have found them.
"They were about the size of my hand - somewhere between six and eight inches long - so very young.
"I looked to see if they were chipped but they were not because they were only a few weeks old."
Andy moved to Bangor two years ago from Peckham in south London to work for Ards and North Down Borough Council as a litter collector.
He had been working in Bangor that morning then tending to the streets in Ards when he found the cats.
He said that during his former 23-year career in housing and health and safety in London, he had been to scenes where lives have been lost, but felt an extra sadness at seeing the dead pets.
He added: "They were soaking wet. I would say someone drowned them then drove past and dumped them.
"It was very sad to see them lying there with no dignity, especially as there are so many people, organisations and charities that take in unwanted pets and animals.
"There was no need to kill them.
"The question is, why would someone do this?
"To kill them and then take them to a car park where anybody could have seen them is terrible. It wasn't like they were hidden by a bush or anything.
"When I worked in London I came across murder and suicide scenes, but it is still heartbreaking to see the kittens when they could have been rescued."
He also posted the find on social media and said that it has sparked a large reaction.
"A lot of people saw the pictures and shared the post or reacted to it," he added.
"Over 100 people reacted to the pictures and some sent private messages.
"There are a lot of animal lovers out there who found it really sad."
The kittens were taken to his depot.
Council enforcement officers are now investigating.