Carcasses horror at Ulster open farm
The PSNI has launched an investigation into alleged animal cruelty after the carcasses of more than 60 animals were discovered on a Co Down farm.
A USPCA welfare officer said investigators discovered dozens of rotting carcasses, including guinea pigs, rabbits, a peacock and a goat, on Saturday evening.
He added that some were decomposed beyond identification.
Officials from the charity returned to Littleacre Open Farm in Loughbrickland yesterday to remove more than 100 remaining animals.
Welfare officer Martin Dobbin said the scene at the farm was horrific.
“We were horrified by the number of dead and decomposing animals.”
The USPCA was alerted by visitors who saw dead animals outside.
When officials forced locked doors they made the gruesome discovery.
Mr Dobbin added: “This would be one of the worst cases I have seen.
“The sheer neglect and poor animal husbandry that went on, I would be surprised if this Littleacre Open Farm was still in existence after today.”
Hamsters were among the other dead animals.
More than 100 living creatures were removed. Roosters, pheasants and a llama are among those being transported to USPCA shelters.
Mr Dobbin added: “It was the sheer volume of calls about these animals that alerted us.
“Certainly animals were in outbuildings behind lock and key, they didn't do it themselves and while they were behind lock and key they can't feed themselves, we can only surmise that the animals died through neglect or starvation.”
A PSNI spokeswoman said that police officers assisted the USPCA in the Fourtownschool Road area of Loughbrickland on Saturday.
She added that an investigation into alleged animal cruelty has now been launched.