30 dead calves dumped near Augher

Dead calves have been dumped along the border
Dead calves have been dumped along the border

AN investigation is underway following the discovery of around 30 dead calves dumped between Augher and Aughnacloy.

Officers from the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (DARD) and Dungannon Council worked for several days before disposing of the rotting carcasses on Friday.

They were made aware of the grim discovery, just miles from the border with Monaghan, on Wednesday past. It is also close to the site where dead and malnourished horses were discovered late last year.

New regulations brought in a number of years ago mean that livestock owners have to pay to properly dispose of carcasses. The Ulster Farmers’ Union (UFU) has expressed concerned about the potential animal health implications of the discovery.

The recently-appointed president of the UFU, Ian Marshall, said that the latest reports of livestock carcasses being dumped illegally were a serious concern.

“There are proper channels for disposing of dead animals for a reason and anyone who chooses not to make use of these is putting the whole livestock industry at risk,” he said. “

The potential for spreading disease is incredibly high when an animal is dumped illegally.

“Here in Northern Ireland farmers have worked hard towards reaching the highest animal health and welfare standards so something like this could derail all that good work.”

Mr Marshall urged anyone with information relating to this incident or noticed anything suspicious to report it to the relevant officials.

A spokesperson for DARD confirmed that it had received a report of ‘multiple’ carcasses in the area, which is understood to be close to the Altadaven Road area.