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Left to stray, dogs maul Ambury sheep



stuff.co.nz, 24.03.2015

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      Left to stray, dogs maul Ambury sheep
     Rangers are begging people to keep their dogs under control, after a spate of maulings at Ambury Regional Park.
      Fourteen sheep have been killed by roaming dogs at the Auckland council-owned farm in the past three weeks.
      Among the dead animals were two pet merino sheep, Mini and Lollipop, who had been used in the farm's education programme.
      Ranger Garry Hewson said it was a gruesome and upsetting find.
      "The volunteers arrived at 7.30am to feed the animals they had raised from lambs and they were mauled to death in the paddock."
      Some of the sheep were not yet dead and had to be put down to end their suffering, Hewson said.
      Dogs are banned at the Mangere Bridge farm, which is home to about 700 sheep as well as cattle, goats, pigs and poultry.
      Hewson has been at the farm for decades and said attacks on sheep tend to come in clusters.
      In the 1990s all the pet sheep died in a series of attacks, he said.
      "Once the dogs start they usually keep going until they get caught or their owners tie them up. Once they get the taste for blood and the excitement of it they usually come back."
      Head ranger Janine Nillesen believes the dogs responsible for the latest attack have now been contained by their owners.
      But the rangers say it's a good reminder to all dog-owners to keep an eye out for their pets and keep them secure.












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