Thugs have been slammed after a potentially deadly wire was placed at neck height across a cycle path.
The booby trap was discovered at a well-known Crieff beauty spot regularly used by cyclists, dog walkers and horse riders.
It is understood to be the second such death trap to be found in recent weeks.
Tayside Police are hunting the culprits after the fence wire was discovered at the Knock, beside Crieff Hydro.
Staff from the hotel are keeping a daily check on the area in a bid to ensure there is no repeat of the reckless act.
A warning is also being issued to the perpetrators that they could be charged and prosecuted if caught.
The incident follows cases in which similar horror traps which have been set up elsewhere in the UK.
Two children aged six and seven were left with cuts to their faces and necks after cycling into a wire which had been strung up between trees last month in Tameside, Greater Manchester.
A 10-year-old boy suffered throat injuries and was thrown from his bike in another incident in Colchester two weeks ago.
Crieff Hydro staff were alerted to the recent incident by walkers on the Knock.
A hotel spokesman yesterday said: ”This incident was quite reckless. I don’t know why anyone would want to do this. We are asking cyclists and walkers using the Knock to be vigilant and we have countryside rangers checking the area on a daily basis.”
Louise Russell (34), of Crieff, who regularly cycles on the Knock, said: ”I would hope those who carried this out don’t understand the full implications of what could have happened rather than an act of malice.
”Lots of cyclists use the Knock and I regularly cycle here. Those on bikes coming down the Knock wouldn’t see this wire.”
Emma Cameron (31), of Auchterarder, a dog walker who uses the Knock, described the incident as ”pretty dangerous”.
”There are many dog walkers in this area so this is worrying,” she said.
Countryside ranger Richard Armstrong said: ”If someone had hit this wire at speed they could have been badly hurt. It’s important that anyone with information gets in touch with the police.”
Tayside Police community crime officer Sarah Jane Bell said: ”This was an extremely dangerous thing to do and could have resulted in serious injury.
”This path is very well used by cyclists, walkers and horse riders and it was pure luck that no one was hurt.
”I don’t know if this was youths larking about or if it was done by someone with more sinister motives, but we would appeal for anyone with any information to come forward.
”A child could have been very seriously hurt if they had been knocked off their horse or bike, or a horse could have broken a leg if it had been caught in the wire. Many dog walkers use this path too and the danger to them and local wildlife is clear to see.”
Posters will be placed in the area asking the public for their assistance in the matter.