£15,000 worth of sheep stolen from Peebles farm

MORE than £15,000 worth of blackface sheep have been stolen from a farm in the Scottish Borders. Police have warned farmers to be on the look-out after rustlers made off with a flock of 164 sheep sometime over a four week period.

The thefts happened between July 19 and August 20 from the farm near Peebles. It is the latest in a series of thefts of livestock from farms in rural areas such as the Borders. Livestock rustling is believed to cost Scottish farmers more than £250,000 a year.

Figures show the cost of sheep rustling increased by 170% between 2010 and 2011. It is thought 67,000 sheep were stolen in the UK last year, at a cost of £6m. Rural insurers NFU Mutual saw a 166% rise in claims of stolen livestock in Scotland.