Police are investigating the death of about 500 sheep on a Southland farm:
. . . The loss of the stock is estimated to be about $75,000, with each animal potentially worth $150.
The sheep were found dead in a gully on Mt Wendon, owned by Steve and Steph Hastie in the Wendon Valley.
Steve Hastie declined to comment and Steph Hastie said they “really don’t want to think about it”.
“It’s a big hit,” she said.
The sheep are understood to have been smothered. Smothering can occur when sheep are startled or rush to a particular area and end up suffocating each other with their own wool. . .
Neighbours suspect poachers might have scared the sheep.
Whether that’s the case or it was a natural occurrence it’s an awful thing to happen to a flock in both animal welfare and financial terms.