Missing buffalo evades searchers after close call

Stevie Mitchell, of Buffalo Farm, is keen to see the animal returned safely.
Stevie Mitchell, of Buffalo Farm, is keen to see the animal returned safely.

The missing buffalo which escaped near Kirkcaldy on Saturday has slipped past searchers looking to bring it home.

A reward has been offered for the animal which escaped from Torbain Farm.

However, he had been spotted on a road near Shawsmill Farm, west of Newliston, and in a post late last night Buffalo Farm had been hopeful of bringing it in today.

It was lured into a field in the area and plans were made to bring another buffalo along – which would have a calming influence on the escapee, making it easier to get recapture.

However when searchers returned at first light today, the buffalo had once more escaped.

Steve Mitchell, of Buffalo Farm, urged drivers on the Torbain Road to be on the lookout for the animal.

He said: “One of the lads found him last night, and we got very close to catching him but unfortunately he got past us.

“But we did get him into a field which we hoped would contain him overnight and we could bring some other buffalo along which would settle him down.

“But unfortunately it didn’t contain him. At 1am last night he was lying down quite happy.

“We took him some silage and we though ‘great’. But went up first thing this morning and he was gone.

“In one area the fence was down so he’s strolled out that field and back into the Cardenden Woods.

“We were maybe one body too short. He came out on the road at the junction up from Shawsmill.

“It was probably quite stressful for him with all the flashing lights of the tractors, it wasn’t ideal.

“But it was a big relief that he’s ok. I was beginning to think he’d come a cropper somewhere or somebody had poached him or something but fortunately he’s actually fine. Certainly the speed he ran off at, he’s very fine.

“If we could get him somewhere we knew he was going to be, I’d let another buffalo out because the two of them are a calming influence on each other. They don’t like being on their own at all, it’s not good for them.

“Daylight couldn’t come early enough. We set off with another buffalo and then it turned out he wasn’t in the field.

“It’s back to searching, but I’ve kindly been loaned a set of heat vision goggles so I’ve very hopeful of being able to detect him in the thick trees because it’s like you’re looking for a needle in a haystack so it’s going to make the needle a little bit more obvious.”

And Steve has advice for anyone who is in the area.

“Keep your eyes peeled, and anyone driving the Torbain Road from Oriel Road to Cardenden to take extra care in case he reappears on to that road again. People tend to drive it quite quickly and there’s a lot of blind corners.”`

And yesterday Steve offered a reward to anyone who finds the buffalo.

“If anyone is out looking I’m quite happy to put up a reward. There’s a turkey – Christmas dinner’s on me. Anyone out walking their dog up that way, it would be appreciated. I’d be extremely grateful for some information on where it is.”

Anyone who can help is urged to call the Buffalo Farm on 01592 646252.