Thieves take home the bacon

Athy Garda Station is investigating the theft of 29 pigs from a piggery in Clonery, Athy last Friday night/Saturday morning.

Athy Garda Station is investigating the theft of 29 pigs from a piggery in Clonery, Athy last Friday night/Saturday morning.

According to Sgt Jim Bergin, the theft occurred in the early hours of October 1 last. It is believed an axe and a trailer were used in the theft. He is appealing for witnesses or anyone who heard noise during the night to contact Athy Garda Station on 059 8634210.

“I really don’t know what to say,” said pig farmer Paddy Kelly, who was still in shock. “All the pigs were let loose. They were fat finished pigs ready for market. They would be worth about

E1,200 a piece. It was very brazen. They also took tools from the store room as well. I am very much shocked. This is the first time this has ever happened. Even the guard who was out said he never heard the likes of it before.”

Teagasc’s head of commercial pig production, Michael Martin, said pig rustling was on the increase and for farmers to be on alert.

“It’s unusual but not uncommon. It does happen. It all depends on the weight and age of the pigs.

“It would be easy to take small piglets who are 8-10 weeks old, but older than that the heavier they are the more difficult. There would definitely be noise disturbances in the vicinity.”

“Pigs going to slaughter need national identification and transparency codes so if these missing pigs turn up at a licensed slaughter house they will be detected,” he added.

There is still hope that these little piggys will hopefully find their way home.