Dozens of animals dumped outside a school - including a 'decapitated deer' - has led to a police hunt to find the culprit.

Pheasants, chickens and hares were among 25 animal carcasses chucked in the road outside Awbridge Primary School in Awbridge, a small village just outside Romsey.

According to police, bystanders and drivers in Danes Road began calling them at around 6.30am on Friday.

READ MORE: Dead deer hanged from a tree at recreation ground in Totton

Daily Echo:

"Like something out of a horror movie"

Among them was Stockbridge resident Mandy Robinson, 47, who was driving past the school with her husband at approximately 6am when she saw the horrific scene.

She said that it was “like something out of a horror movie".

Mandy added: “I could not believe what I was seeing. There were all these dead hares and rabbits.

“This was only about an hour or so before the school breakfast club began, so there were going to be primary school children walking by this horrible sight.

"I immediately called the police when I saw it and the person I spoke to said she was going to get on it right away.“I don’t know why someone would do this.”

Officers were swiftly sent to the scene and cleared up the grim flytipping with Test Valley Borough Council.

Daily Echo:

Headteacher reacts to dumping of animals

The headteacher of Awbridge Primary School Jayne Fahey said some of her staff also came across the horrific sight on their way to work.

In a statement given yesterday morning, she said: "As headteacher, I am truly saddened by this event and struggle to comprehend why anyone would think it an appropriate thing to do.

"My main concern is for the well being of our pupils and the members of staff who were exposed to the scene prior to children arriving and I am extremely proud of how they dealt with situation.

"Thankfully, the police and council responded immediately to ensure the scene was cleared before any children arrived at school.

"We are pleased to confirm there has been no disruption to the children's learning. We will continue to work with the Police whilst they complete their investigations."

Daily Echo:

Residents speak out over what happened

One resident said a friend of hers 'were brought to tears by what she had seen'.

Passerby Scott, who didn't want to give his full name, was giving his partner a lift to work when he drove past the discarded bodies at 7.15am.

He said: "We drove around the corner and saw a load of animals outside the school gates.

"There were pheasants, rabbits, a big hare and also a small deer - possibly a muntjac - that had been decapitated.

"It is shocking right outside the school gates.

"It's just senseless and needless killing of animals - it's bizarre."

He guessed it could be the work of hunters, but added: "Why just dump it outside the school gates? It's vile.

"The school staff were in disbelief."

Reports of similar incidents

Police enquiries are ongoing and the public are asked to contact police with any information or footage by calling 101 or visiting the police website, quoting 44240058633.

This comes almost four months after a similar incident where 40 animals were dumped on Longstock Road, north of Stockbridge.

The remains of the animals were found scattered in the road on Sunday, November 26, with police launching an investigation. The incident was believed to have been linked to hare coursing.