Barney the Bull Captured After More Than 2 Months on the Loose

barney the bull
Barney the Bull is headed to a farm in New Jersey to live out his days. Courtesy Suffolk SPCA.

By Oliver Peterson

On Wednesday, Sept. 22, at approximately 11 p.m., Barney, the 1,500-pound bull who had received a great deal of attention after he escaped captivity in July, was safely captured by Mike Stura of Skylands Animal Sanctuary & Rescue at the former duck farm located on Barnes Road in Moriches.

Barney had originally been seen after escaping from a slaughterhouse on the Moriches farm property on the eve of July 20. He was seen running through a residential neighborhood in the Moriches/Mastic area. Barney had avoided capture for over two months, according to Suffolk SPCA’s announcement about his recovery.

Stura, who was tasked with rescuing Barney safely, set up a coral as well as a feeder to lure the bull to that specific location at the former duck farm. Now that he’s been recaptured, Barney is eluding slaughter and will instead live out his days at Skylands Animal Sanctuary & Rescue, a 232-acre farm housing many rescued and abused animals in Wantage, New Jersey.

Suffolk County SPCA Chief Roy Gross thanked the Suffolk County Police Department and Suffolk County Police Aviation for their assistance throughout the process. “They made all department resources available, including helicopters, drones, and digital signs on Sunrise Highway warning drivers to use caution,” Gross explained, adding, “We posted signs throughout the area warning residents to be cautious and to contact authorities immediately.”

The organization’s SPCA large animal veterinarian was also available to ensure the health of the animal. Suffolk SPCA was the lead agency in coordinating the efforts to bring Barney to safety.

“We would like to thank everyone for their support and concern as well as rescue groups who also assisted during this ordeal,” Gross said in an email about the successful effort. “Great job of collaboration by all who participated.”

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