Farmers and smallholders urged to be on the lookout for poultry rustlers

Darlington and Stockton Times: 100 geese were stolen from a farm at Flawith 100 geese were stolen from a farm at Flawith

THE theft of more than 100 geese from a single farm has prompted a warning to farmers and landowners across the region.

The geese – destined for Christmas tables – were taken from a farm at Flawith, near Easingwold in North Yorkshire last weekend and together were worth £17,600.

And now the Country, Land and Business Association is warning smallholders in particular to be on the look-out for bird rustlers eager to cash in on the traditional seasonal demand for turkeys, chickens, geese and ducks.

Regional director Dorothy Fairburn said: “Specialist poultry farms are usually well protected with modern alarm systems and sophisticated security technology but even they should be extra alert day and night during the run-up to December 25 and never underestimate the audacity and determination of thieves seeking poultry to steal.

“However, it is often the ordinary farmer rearing birds for family, friends and regular customers who proves to be the most vulnerable target for poultry rustlers.

“Failure to take strict security precautions to safeguard their flock could be rewarded with a miserable Christmas when they find an empty shed one morning and months of work and investment wiped out in one night.

“Don't forget one of the oldest - but still one of the most efficient and cost-effective farmyard alarm systems – an alert dog with sensitive hearing and a loud bark."

Owners are uyrged to keep their flock in a structurally sound building with locked doors and sealed windows, as close to the farmhouse as possible and to keep a look-out for strange vehicles nearby and note their registration numbers.


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