Farmers in the Scottish Borders have been urged to join together and form a watch scheme after 53 sheep and lambs went missing from a farm.
Police are investigating the theft of the animals from a field at South Fallaknowe Farm, near Eyemouth, Berwickshire, over the course of the past three weeks
A spokesman for Lothian and Borders Police asked anyone who had seen anything unusual in the area in recent weeks to contact them.
Livestock rustling has been the subject of regular warnings recently. The illegal practice is thought to cost Scottish farmers more than £250,000 a year.
Farmer Ian MacDonald told ITV Border that the thieves are well organised:
South of Scotland MSP and the Lib Dems Rural Affairs spokesperson Jim Hume said:
Figures show that the cost of sheep rustling increased by 170% between 2010 and 2011.
In the UK, it is thought that 67,000 sheep were stolen at a cost of £6 million last year.
Insurers NFU mutual saw a 166% rise in claims of stolen livestock in Scotland.
Rural Affairs spokesman Tim Price says high meat prices and improved security on farm vehicles aappear to be leading a resurgence in livestock rustling. he said:
Hannah Lomas sent this report for ITV Border