Cookstown 'lamb killer' still on the hunt

Dog suspected of killing lambs and a calf
Dog suspected of killing lambs and a calf

A Dangerous dog that a few weeks ago was reported to have killed a number of lambs, is still reported to be killing sheep across a five-mile radius from Drum Manor Forest.

A local farmer, who has so far lost almost 20 lambs and a calf in vicious night-time attacks, told the Mail: "It is still going on every night in total we have lost an average of 17 or 18 lambs and a calf."

He said the dog, which is thought to have been roaming wild since a Boxing Day hunt, is said to be travelling around Drum Manor and as far as five miles down the Omagh Road outside Cookstown.

"It is killing sheep left, right and centre," the concerned farmer said.

And the area, he said "covers from Drum Manor to teenage Kildress football pitch, to Gortrea right over to Corvanghan and Dunamore".

"This dog has been lost from a hunt on Boxing Day and from what I believe the people that had the hunt are from the Mid Ulster area," he added.

"We are averaging more dead animals if we count the sheep that are having miscarriages.

"It's not only ourselves being affected by this, it is every single farmer in this area."

He said the dog strikes at night and that now they are having to hold night shifts to try and keep their livestock safe.

Mid Ulster UUP councillor Mark Glasgow told the Mail on April 26: "Over these past few days and past week I have received a number of calls from concerned sheep farmers and residents regarding a stray dog that is hunting sheep and has killed a number of lambs.

"I have been in contact with the dog warden and the council officer regarding this situation and together we are working to stop these huntings and attacks.

"The dog warden has introduced measures that have been put in place and is doing everything they can to stop these attacks.

"I would appeal to the people living in the area of Kildress, Tulnacross and Ballynasollus areas to ensure their dog or dogs are not allowed to stray off into the fields as we are in the lambing season and if anyone see's a stray dog or dogs they need to call the Dog Warden at the council."

We have not yet been able to reach anyone from a local hunt to find out if they are missing a dog.