A cash reward has been offered to catch a “drunken idiot” whose shocking actions allowed more than 120 buffalo and several horses to run free in Fife.
Workers at The Buffalo Farm and Shawsmill Stables on the outskirts of Kirkcaldy have expressed their dismay at what happened in the early hours of Sunday morning, when an as yet unidentified man recklessly unlocked gates at both properties to let animals out.
The culprit is thought to have firstly broken into the Buffalo Farm’s property where he opened 18 heavy steel gates, allowing scores of buffalo out into the snowy conditions.
Although the animals did not reach the main road, the stress of the ordeal caused one buffalo to give birth to her calf prematurely and a number of buffalo suffered injuries.
If that wasn’t enough though, the man continued up the Torbain Road to Shawsmill Stables where he unbolted several stable doors in three different stable blocks and proceeded to kick the horses upon letting them loose.
A number of horses wandered on to the main road and one horse in particular suffered serious injuries from falling on the icy road.
The man, described as a male of slim build and around 5’ 7” tall, was captured on CCTV cameras at around 4.20am on Sunday morning and can be seen on the footage falling face first over a fence.
More images of the culprit who tried to let out our herd of Buffalo then went on to let our horses, causing one to get badly injured.Please help us catch him so that he can be held accountable for his actions
Steven Mitchell, from The Buffalo Farm, has appealed for anyone who may have seen the man responsible or taxi drivers who may have dropped him off nearby to come forward.
“After what has been without question the toughest week in business, I woke to find some drunken idiot had taken it upon themselves to try to let the entire shed of buffalo out,” he said
“As you can imagine, letting over 100 buffalo out could have caused a major incident, not to mention endangering the lives of the animals with the icy conditions.
“Thankfully, he has been caught on CCTV and as you can see from one of the videos, he probably has a sore face from when he fell.”
Owners of Shawsmill Horses also took to social media to express their disgust at the turn of events and appealed for information.
“Several horses were able to wander onto the dangerous windy icy main roads out with our property and one poor horse in particular has serious injuries from falling on the icy road, caused wholly by this individual,” they said.
“It’s appalling to think of the terror that these poor horses and buffalo have been subjected to in the early hours, being made worse by the terrible weather conditions.
“We believe that this individual was on their way home from a night out in nearby Kirkcaldy and may have walked or been dropped by taxi along the route of Oriel Rd/Old Torbain Road heading towards Cardenden and had to walk remainder of way home.
“It would appear they broke into Buffalo Farm first then carried on to us causing destruction and harm to animals at each place.
“Please put yourself in our position if this individual had broken into your home last night and injured your family pet.”
The man in the footage was wearing slim fit skinny jeans and a light coloured long sleeved jumper or top.
A Police Scotland spokesperson said: “Police in Fife have received a report that gates to a shed containing buffalo were deliberately opened in the Bogiliy Road area of Kirkcaldy.
“The incident was reported to police on Sunday March 4.
“Inquiries into the full circumstances are ongoing and anyone with information is asked to contact officers via 101, quoting incident number 1715 of March 4.”