Officials kill water buffalo on the loose in neighborhood near Moab

A wild water buffalo tromps through mud at Corroboree Billabong in the Northern Territory of Australia, Nov. 28, 2005 | Photo by Djambalawa via Wikimedia Commons, St. George News

ST. GEORGE — Officials killed a water buffalo that was roaming through a neighborhood in Grand County near Moab Saturday after it damaged a neighbor’s property and injured a horse.

A wild water buffalo roams in Kaziranga National park, Assam, India, Dec. 17, 2015 | Photo by Dr. Raju Kasambe via Wikimedia Commons, St. George News

The water buffalo – an animal native to parts of Asia – had escaped from its owner’s corral, according to a Facebook post from Grand County Sheriff’s Office. Due to a lack of tranquilizing materials and concerns about public safety, the animal’s owner and sheriff’s deputies decided to kill the animal with several gunshots on Spanish Valley Drive near Beeman Road.

Before the buffalo was euthanized, it broke into a neighbor’s property and caused enough damage for a horse to escape, officials said. The horse was later found with “significant injuries” and appeared to be in shock.

“A local veterinarian was called in and, unfortunately, the decision was ultimately made for the horse to be euthanized,” officials wrote on Facebook.

The water buffalo was reported to be near several homes in the neighborhood and had come within 15 feet of several small children, according to the Grand County Sheriff’s Office.

After the water buffalo’s owner discussed options to contain the animal, the decision was ultimately made to euthanize it because of the danger to the public, officials said.

It’s not an animal you usually get to see everyday, so it was sad to see the situation turn out the way it did… The decision by those involved to put down the animal was not easily made, nor made without considerable discussions.

The Sheriff’s Office said they wanted to inform the public of the incident because of the several gunshots heard in the neighborhood. Officials also asked people to respect the privacy of the water buffalo’s owner.

The map below shows the approximate location of where officials euthanized the water buffalo.

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6 Comments

  • Carpe Diem November 8, 2018 at 8:38 am

    There was a water buffalo on Dixie Drive the rancher would let out occasionally in that small hay field he tends. It’s been maybe 6-7 years since I’ve seen him though :/ What was Mr Water Buffalo doing, running around Moab? Looking for Mrs Water Buffalo.

    • bikeandfish November 8, 2018 at 9:16 am

      There use to be a semi-blind resident that walk through Moab with his Bison years ago. I remember being confused by that as a tourist. But that was decades ago.

      • 80083 November 8, 2018 at 4:03 pm

        The bison was blind, not the man.

        • bikeandfish November 8, 2018 at 11:19 pm

          Better memory than I. It also makes more sense 😉. Thanks for the correction.

  • KR567 November 8, 2018 at 9:25 am

    This picture offends me ..how about showing some automobile accidents or maybe a house burning down or maybe an article about a hill burning up…lol !

  • DRT November 8, 2018 at 11:08 am

    While it is unfortunate that this critter had to be put down, it looks like there really was no reasonable alternative.
    This sure reinforces the fact that a copper never knows what his or her day will bring when they go on duty.
    Making the call to take this animal down must have been an agonizing decision. And part of the agonizing had to be that somewhere, someone who has never been in a similar position is surely going to Monday Morning Quarterback the decision and call for the cops and even the owner to be censured for their decision.

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