The Leitch family pose for a photo at sunset. Photo Submitted

The Leitch family pose for a photo at sunset. Photo Submitted

Hunters shoot goat on small farm west of Eckville

The family says they “feel violated and unsafe” on their own property after the incident

Hunting season began on Nov. 1, and one local farmer is calling on hunters to be responsible and ethical after one of her goats was shot.

Amy Leitch, a homesteader and goat farmer at Will O’ the Wisps Paddock west of Eckville, said her registered male Kiko goat was shot 50 yards from her house.

She says it happened around sun down, on Nov. 1.

“We aren’t on a public road, the only road on our land comes right up to house,” Leitch said.

She says hunters are not allowed on the property, but she does know the land owners on the farms surrounding her property does allow it.

Leitch speculates hunters shot into land after missing whatever they were aiming at.

“I think it was probably a missed shot, but that isn’t an excuse. Whoever shot was paying attention to what was around them and beyond their shot,” Leitch said.

“Either it was a mistake or someone purposefully shot at my goats, and ignored the house that is 50 feet away.”

Eustace, the Kiko buck, was in a pen with another male goat near the house. Leitch says it is very clear these are penned animals and not wild.

The homestead can be clearly seen from any direction for at least two miles, according to Leitch.

“We have done our due diligence as animal owners to ensure they are safe and taken care of, and that you can tell that looking in.”

Eustace was badly injured by the shot, and is being cared for to the best of Leitch’s ability, but they are not hopeful he will survive.

Leitch says the incident has impacted their life more than just disrupting her breeding program.

Now, she says her family does not feel safe on their property.

“We have been violated. We haven’t been outside much since it happened,” she said.

The family has reorganized how they live their life, including when to go out to do chores.

Leitch says the family has moved their chores later in the morning to avoid twilight and sunset, when hunters are more active.

The family has also taken to wearing high visibility clothing while out doing their chores.

“We are dealing with this the best we can. I know I have a completely different view of things right now, and probably for the next month.”

Leitch says she has nothing against hunters, as she herself is one.

However, she wants to make sure that something like this doesn’t happen again.

“I have great respect for hunters who are responsible and ethical,” she said. “but we have to reiterate the code of ethics of hunting.”

She is urging hunting going out over this next month to have open communication between the land owners, those of neighbouring land.

Leitch is also reminding hunters to know their surroundings, to make sure their shot is clear and to know what is beyond the shot before pulling the trigger.

“I would hate for someone else to have to go through this, or for something worse to happen.”

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

Eustace was gravely injured when a hunter’s bullet struck him while he was in a pen close to the Leitch family’s house. Photo Submitted

Eustace was gravely injured when a hunter’s bullet struck him while he was in a pen close to the Leitch family’s house. Photo Submitted

Just Posted

A damaged unicorn statue is shown in a field outside of Delia, Alta. in this undated handout photo. It’s not often police can report that a unicorn has been found, but it was the truth Saturday when RCMP said a stolen, stainless-steel statue of the mythical beast had been located in a field not far from where he’d been taken. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, RCMP *MANDATORY CREDIT*
Mounties get their unicorn; stolen statue of mythical beast found in Alberta field

Police are still looking for suspects, and have called in their forensics experts to help

Stettler resident Jaden Norman is pictured here outside of the Stettler Learning Centre where she lends a helping hand as a volunteer tutor. photo contributed
Stettler’s Jaden Norman has discovered the many joys of giving back

National Volunteer Week runs April 18th to 24th

There were six additional deaths across Alberta reported over the past 24 hours, bringing the death toll to 1,926 since the beginning of the pandemic. (File photo)
A commercial building, housing two businesses, in Stettler was completed destroyed by a fire Thursday. (Photo courtesy Stettler Regional Fire Department)
Fire destroys commercial building in Stettler

Giant plume of smoke attracts spectators

Conservative leader Erin O’Toole holds a press conference on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, April 6, 2020. Top Tory leaders of past and present will speak with supporters today about what a conservative economic recovery from COVID-19 could look like. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
O’Toole to vote against Conservative MP’s private bill on ‘sex-selective abortion’

Erin O’Toole said he supports a woman’s right to choose and will personally vote against the private member’s bill

Each spring, the Okanagan Fest-of-Ale is held in Penticton. This year, as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, the festival will not be held. However, beer is still available. How much do you know about this beverage? (pxfuel.com)
QUIZ: How much do you really know about beer?

Put your knowledge to the test with this short quiz

Pall Bearers carrying the coffin of the Duke of Edinburgh, followed by the Prince of Wales, left and Princess Anne, right, into St George’s Chapel for his funeral, at Windsor Castle, in Windsor, England, Saturday April 17, 2021. (Danny Lawson/Pool via AP)
Trudeau announces $200K donation to Duke of Edinburgh award as Prince Philip laid to rest

A tribute to the late prince’s ‘remarkable life and his selfless service,’ the Prime Minister said Saturday

A vial of some of the first 500,000 AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine doses that Canada secured. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Carlos Osorio
Canada’s 2nd blood clot confirmed in Alberta after AstraZeneca vaccine

The male patient, who is in his 60s, is said to be recovering

The funeral of Britain’s Prince Philip in Windsor, England, on Saturday, April 17, 2021. Philip died April 9 at the age of 99. (Kirsty Wigglesworth/AP)
PHOTOS: Prince Philip laid to rest Saturday as sombre queen sits alone

The entire royal procession and funeral took place out of public view within the grounds of Windsor Castle

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau looks on as Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland responds to a question during a news conference on Parliament Hill in Ottawa, Tuesday, Aug. 18, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Expectations high as Trudeau Liberals get ready to unveil first pandemic budget

The Liberals will look to thread an economic needle with Monday’s budget

Doses of the Moderna COVID‑19 vaccine in a freezer trailer, to be transported to Canada during the COVID-19 pandemic. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Pfizer to increase vaccine deliveries in Canada as Moderna supply slashed

Moderna plans to ship 650,000 doses of its vaccine to Canada by the end of the month, instead of the expected 1.2 million

A empty classroom is pictured at Eric Hamber Secondary school in Vancouver, B.C. Monday, March 23, 2020. The Alberta government says schools in Calgary will move to at-home learning starting Monday for students in grades 7 to 12.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Calgary schools to shift to at-home learning for grades 7 to 12 due to COVID-19

The change, due to COVID-19, is to last for two weeks

Most Read