Eleven continental and four forward store cattle were stolen from Mount Eagle farm in Co Laois at the weekend. Gardaí in Portlaoise are investigating the incident.
Owner of the cattle Kieran Keegan told the Irish Farmers Journal: “I saw them last when I was herding last Saturday [15 February]. I put silage in with them, they were all in a shed. They were gone this morning [Monday] when I went over and I knew straight away that they were stolen, but I still searched everywhere.”
The Laois man had been keeping 46 cattle in the shed, which is located approximately 3km from his home.
“There were the four stores in one pen and 11 cattle in a different pen, and those two pens were empty. You could see the hoof marks on the passageway where they must have been loaded on to a lorry or something,” said Keegan.
All of the cattle tag numbers were given to the gardaí. However, without CCTV or witnesses to the crime, they could be difficult to locate.
“It’s devastating,” said Kieran. "That’s the guts of €20,000. I’m absolutely devastated. That could put us out of business. There’s no point in saying it won’t, because it will.”
This is not the first cattle theft to occur in recent weeks. Fifteen cattle were stolen from a farm in Limerick between Sunday 2 February and Monday 3 February.
Fifteen cattle worth €7,000 stolen in Limerick
Tractor stolen from Westmeath farmyard