People in South Ayrshire are being urged to report all cases of animals and livestock abuse following a recent case heard at Ayr Sheriff Court. Ballantrae farmer Kevin MacIntyre (37) was fined £7,000 and ordered to complete 80 hours community service on Monday, 19 November after pleading guilty to the charges of causing unnecessary suffering to his sheep and failure to dispose of carcasses properly.
South Ayrshire Council's Trading Standards team played an important role in securing the farmer's conviction following an anonymous tip off earlier this year. Council officers, along with the SSPCA and vets from the Animal and Plant Health Agency, visited Downan Farm where they discovered decaying carcasses, some of which had been lying for months, in a shed and in fields close to the beach. Many others were also found dumped in an open pit.
Commenting, Councillor Philip Saxton, South Ayrshire Council's Portfolio Holder for Housing and Community Wellbeing said "This was a particularly harrowing case and we worked closely with our partners to ensure that justice was done as there was simply no excuse for the failings highlighted.
"Farming is a large and important industry in South Ayrshire and legislation is in place for a reason to protect livestock from suffering and help prevent the spread of disease. Ignoring these legal requirements can have a damaging effect on the reputation of the industry and the livelihood of people who play by the rules.
"I'd encourage anyone who cares for livestock and who is having issues to get in touch with us as early as possible to prevent similar cases from happening in future."
If you find dead or injured farm animals that you think the owner may not know about, if you have concerns about livestock that are showing signs of suffering, or if you have any concerns about how a keeper is disposing of dead animals, please contact South Ayrshire Council's Customer Services on 0300 123 0900 and ask to speak with Trading Standards.