Scavengers likely culprit of livestock mutilations, Fort St. John RCMP say

Small scavengers are considered the culprit behind a pair of livestock mutilations north of Fort St. John, police say.

Fort St. John RCMP said Tuesday that necropsies have been performed on the dead bull found in Cecil Lake on Sept. 22, and the dead horse in Rose Prairie on Oct. 1.

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While the horse died of a perforated bowel, the cause of the bull's death could not be determined, RCMP said. 

Both animals were found missing their gentials.

Pathologists confirm marks found in the genital area of the horse were consistent with those made by small animal claws, RCMP said.

The BC RCMP Livestock Section was consulted on the investigation, and the findings "support the conclusion that the physical damage was caused by scavengers as their first target is almost always soft tissue," RCMP said.

"The necropsies conducted on both animals clarifies the situation," Cst. Chad Neustaeter said in a news release.

"The findings help to remove the suspicion of human involvement at this time."

There's no evidence to confirm a link between the two incidents, RCMP said.

Also on Tuesday, police could provide no immediate details about reports of a cow found butchered in a field in Cecil Lake last week.

This is a developing story.

Email Managing Editor Matt Preprost at editor@ahnfsj.ca.

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