Who’s Killing Buck Birdsong’s Cows?

Buck Birdsong Cows
This story originally appeared in the September 2018 issue with the headline “Who’s Killing Buck Birdsong’s Cows?”

One sunny afternoon in February 2014, Buck Birdsong heard a low cry echo across his Longview ranch. One of his cows, a recent mother, was wailing relentlessly, a slow beat of deep, frantic moans. He jumped in his beige F-250 to investigate, rumbling over the ranch’s winding dirt roads, through the pasture, and out toward the shallow, moss-covered pond that sits near the back of his land: 112 wide-open acres nestled amid the Piney Woods of East Texas and punctuated with a few clumps of elm trees, where his small herd of cattle often gathers in the shade.

As he approached the pond, Buck saw a single calf lying beneath a tree. He quickly realized why its mother had been bawling. The calf lay stiff and still, its dark, velvety coat cold to the touch. It had been dead for hours.

He grabbed the 250-pound calf by its legs and rolled it over, searching every inch of the animal for a possible cause of death. Buck had been raising cattle for a long time—this ranchland had been in his family for more than a century—and he was accustomed to losing the occasional animal, even the young. There are a lot of ways for a calf to die. It could be as complicated as a rare hereditary disease or as simple as nibbling on a few too many acorns or on a piece of toxic trash that had blown in from the road. But if the calf had been sick, Buck hadn’t noticed, and at first glance there was nothing obviously wrong with it besides streaks of dried scour (diarrhea) on its backside. He thought the animal might have been dehydrated, since it lay so close to the pond.

But then Buck saw what looked like a bullet hole on the calf’s back, and he surmised that maybe a stray shot had escaped from the woods of the hunting lease that borders about a third of his land. More likely, he knew, the hole was probably a peck mark from a crow or vulture. Erring on the side of caution, Buck called the Gregg County Sheriff’s Office and filed a report with the deputy who came out to the ranch. With no clear cause of death, the two men agreed, the dead calf was simply an anomaly. When the deputy left, Buck fired up his tractor with its front-end loader, dug four or five feet into the earth—just deep enough so varmints couldn’t reach the carcass—and rolled the calf into its grave.

A few days later, he heard the wailing of another cow. He rushed over to the pond and discovered a second calf, also dead, lying beneath the same elm tree. Buck rolled the animal over but couldn’t find a hole like the one he’d puzzled over on the first—though he did see streaks of scour. One dead calf could have been a freak occurrence, but two such similar deaths, so close together, surely meant that something was wrong. Buck loaded the lifeless animal into the bed of his truck and drove twenty minutes to the veterinarian’s office of Randall Spencer, in nearby Gilmer.

Wielding a pair of hedge clippers, Spencer opened the calf at the sternum, reached inside, and, one by one, pulled out the heart, the lungs, the kidneys, the liver, the intestines, and the spleen, slicing them up and carefully inspecting their contents. It wasn’t until later, when one of Spencer’s colleagues reached his hand into the last of the calf’s four stomachs, that they found something unusual. He pulled his hand out and spread his palm, revealing a small pile of a type of grain that can be toxic to cattle. Buck had never fed that particular grain to his herd, and when he returned home and searched his land, he found no trace of it anywhere. How, he wondered, had his calf ingested it?

Within a week of the vet visit, Buck heard yet another distress call coming from one of his cows. This time, the calf he found by the pond was close to death. It was wobbling unsteadily, as though it were drunk, and it had the same streaks of sickly gray scour running down its backside that he had noticed on the two dead calves. Buck loaded the calf into his blue gooseneck trailer, guiding it carefully through the chute, and raced to Spencer’s office, the tall pines that line Texas Highway 300 whipping by his window in a dark-green blur.

After examining the calf, the vet told Buck that it was possible the animal had licked a discarded car battery. Buck left the calf with Spencer and again searched his property, this time for a battery, but again he found nothing. A couple mornings later, he got a phone call from Spencer. The calf had died overnight—there was nothing he could have done to save it. Spencer had already performed a necropsy on the dead calf, and he told Buck that he’d found the same suspicious grain inside it.

Over the next four years, fifteen more of Buck’s calves would die. Investigators with the sheriff’s office, a Texas game warden, and even a special ranger with the Texas and Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association have worked the case, but so far, none have been able to identify any leads. The cause of death, however, is clear: the same toxic grain has been found inside each dead calf. Someone, it seems, is intentionally killing Buck Birdsong’s calves.

Buck Birdsong

Buck always knew he would work with cattle.

Photograph by Trevor Paulhus

The Birdsong family name runs deep in Longview. Buck’s grandfather, great-grandfather, and uncles all owned cattle ranches in the area. Birdsong Street cuts through the southern part of town. Buck, who is 68, says one of his  earliest memories is of his grandfather’s ranch just north in Pittsburgh, where his father, who served for years as Gregg County clerk, frequently brought him as a little kid. Buck couldn’t have been more than three when his grandfather’s car got stuck in the muddy pasture one day. As his parents would later tell the story, Buck’s grandfather had to drive the tractor to pull it out, so he stood Buck, still in diapers, on the front seat of the car and told him to steer.

During the summertime when he was a teen, Buck would wake at three-thirty to milk the cows on one of his family’s ranches, go tend to the beef cattle on another family ranch during the day, and then return to milk the dairy cows once more. When he’d finally get home at six-thirty, sweaty and exhausted, he’d sit down for dinner and then go straight to bed, only to wake up early the next morning to do it all again. But he loved the life, and he knew from an early age that he would always want to be around cattle. He graduated from Texas A&M with degrees in journalism and animal science—his classmates called him the “animal evangelist”—and he almost took a job writing for a cattle industry trade magazine before he accepted one in public relations with Southwestern Electric Power Company in Longview. Even while he was raising three daughters with his wife, Becky, and working for SWEPCO, he’d return to the nearby ranch that his dad had bought from some cousins in the sixties, working in the mornings and coming back for more in the evening hours. When his father died, in 1986, Buck took over the ranch’s cattle operation for good.

Each morning at the ranch these days, Buck wakes at six, reads the newspaper, and then pulls on his grass-stained overalls and tucks them into his work boots. By seven, he’s heading out to check on his cows, his truck disappearing into the hazy morning light. The calves are Buck’s biggest source of income on the ranch—feedlots buy them and fatten them for slaughter—and if everything goes right, he can make a modest profit. But a cattle rancher’s future is as volatile as the East Texas sky. In contrast to the reliable drumbeat of his daily routines—mending fences; killing invasive plants; cutting and baling hay, should rain permit it to grow—Buck, like all independent cattle ranchers, is defenseless against the vagaries of what seem like a thousand forces beyond his control, from foreign trade wars to the weather.

A major drought has plagued some part of Texas at one point in every decade of the past century. When drought strikes, grass-fed cattle have no grass to eat, so ranchers like Buck have to either sell off most of their herd or spend more money on feed. And when demand for feed is high, so are prices. From 2010 to 2011, Texas experienced the driest twelve-month period on record, and the state’s farmers and ranchers posted a $7.62 billion loss, dropping the statewide cattle herd, the nation’s largest, by about 600,000 head.

Sometimes, of course, too much rain can fall. In 2008 Hurricane Ike killed up to five thousand Texas cattle and flooded coastal pastures with its saltwater storm surge. When it rains at Buck’s ranch, cars have a tendency to skid off the road bordering his land and career through the perimeter fence, one time even splashing into the pond. He had to replace one wooden corner fence post with a sturdy, crash-resistant metal bracket anchored in concrete.

Buck’s herd consists of about fifty adult cows and, after calving season each fall, an additional fifty babies, some of whom he’s had to pull out of their mothers by hand. Even for a small herd like his, the operating costs are enormous, and they have only increased over time. When he bought his first tractor in 1985, it cost him $12,000. When he needed to upgrade a few years ago, it set him back $63,000. It’s the same story with mowers, trailers, balers, rakes, feeders, and fertilizer.

Being an independent rancher is simply not financially attractive, and by 2012 there were 20,000 more Texas farmers age 70 or older than there were Texas farmers between the ages of 25 and 34. Aging ranchers are left with little control over what will happen to their land when they’re gone, since their sons or daughters are often uninterested in continuing the ranching tradition they’ve inherited. The land might be sold to become the latest tentacle of an encroaching suburb. Or it might be snapped up by larger farming corporations, which are slowly starting to squeeze out independent cattle ranchers like Buck—just as they already have done to poultry and hog farmers—in their march toward industry domination.

Buck’s done his best to keep cattle ranching in the bloodline. His daughters also have fond memories of spending time out in the pastures with the cows, and his grandchildren like to play with the animals and give the calves names. His favorite family photograph is of his grandkids propped up on golden bales of hay stacked in the barn. Each Christmas at the ranch, Buck gives his daughters packages of fresh beef.   

If a terrible drought returns and stays for good or should the cattle market ultimately prove too costly for Buck’s ranching  to survive, then that Christmas tradition might someday come to an end. And with the longevity of most small cattle ranches already in question, the dead calves have made Buck’s grip on the future all the more tenuous.

Buck is not one to let his emotions show, save for a quick smile or the slight furrow of his brow. A trucker hat usually covers his shock of gray hair, shielding his round cheeks and nose from the sunlight; his eyes are conditioned into a nearly permanent squint. He and Becky, a retired schoolteacher and university instructor, often sit at the dining table in the redbrick ranch house they built in 2000 and watch the late-evening skies darken slowly over their pasture. Sitting there one day this summer, Buck gazed out at a wall of gray thunderclouds that had appeared out of nowhere and spoke softly. “I’ll just wonder, you know,” he said. “I’ll look at thirty calves out there in the pasture and say, ‘Well, I wonder which ones will be next?’ ”

For four nights, he sat on a bucket behind the cover of the trees, staking out the pasture through his night vision goggles.

In more than two thousand investigations over a twenty-year career as a special ranger with the Texas and Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association, Scott Williamson, who now serves as the executive director of law  enforcement and theft prevention, has never seen a case like Buck’s. “Typically, anything we saw was either small numbers or ended up tying back to more of a prussic acid poisoning, which is just a natural poisoning of grasses that come under awful [drought or frost] conditions and can kill cattle in a short period of time,” said Williamson. “It’s just an act of God through a natural process. But I have personally never worked a case of intentional poisoning.”

Investigators are sure it’s intentional. “Our team has looked at multiple possibilities,” Gregg County Sheriff’s Office spokesperson Joshua Tubb said. “At this point, they’ve been able to confidently say that they believe that this is being done by a person intentionally.” The one factor tying all of these dead animals together is the grain inside their stomachs, although investigators would rather not reveal the specific grain and the method they believe is being used to get it inside the calves, since it’s just about the only thing they have right now that bears any semblance to a lead.

About that grain: it can ferment in a cow and cause acidosis, a painful process that causes diarrhea and dehydrates the animal, just as happened to Buck’s calves. In large amounts, it can be deadly. But Spencer, the veterinarian, wasn’t sure the amount of grain he had found in the calves was enough to kill them on its own. So he and Buck tested for just about everything they could think of, sending tissue samples from the dead calves and the grain to the diagnostic lab at Texas A&M, hoping to find that the grain had been soaked in strychnine or warfarin or any other specific toxin that could spur investigators on a trail that might lead to the killer. Nothing came back positive, leaving only the grain. Invesigators continued to search Buck’s land, too, for other culprits, but found none. No residual contaminant from old oil wells, no feral hog poison, no lead.

There’s no pattern to the killings either. Their timing appears to be almost random. For almost a year, from 2015 to 2016, there were no calf deaths at all on the Birdsong ranch. Then they started up again. “The investigative value of the evidence and information we’ve been able to gain so far has been very, very, very limited,” Tubb said. “We don’t have it happening to other people in the area. We don’t have anyone coming forward that may have seen something out of the ordinary.”

“The unusual thing about this case is, Buck is a nice guy,” Spencer said in his office. “Usually, when you get into these deals where somebody is poisoning somebody else’s animals, they are not the cream of the crop people in the world.” Someone will get pissed off at a neighbor and use antifreeze or rat bait to kill their dog. “It is usually not somebody like Buck who is involved in something like that. He is an upstanding citizen, always has been.”

Buck has no ongoing feuds with family members and no disgruntled business partners, and he’s friendly with his neighbors. Like his father, he has upheld his family’s tradition of civic involvement, leading youth Bible study groups at his ranch and serving as chairman of the Good Shepherd Health System board. That’s earned him respect within his tight-knit rural community, but it hasn’t helped influence anyone to come forward with information about the crimes.

But even a good guy like Buck has likely stepped on a few toes over the years. Early in the investigation, detectives with the sheriff’s office asked him if he could think of anyone who might hold a grudge against him. No one came to mind immediately, but that night, he and Becky started brainstorming. The next day, Buck called and gave a detective three names: a man he’d had to fire when he was chairman of the hospital board; another man who was out on parole after he was caught breaking into Buck’s house years ago; and an acquaintance Buck had worked with in some community organizations and with whom he had a prickly relationship. Tubb said investigators followed up on the names, but they produced zero persons of interest.

The sheriff’s office then identified a group of teenage troublemakers as possible suspects, pranksters who might have been killing  the cattle just for fun. But, according to Buck, the investigation into that group didn’t turn up any hard evidence, and the killings continued even after most of the teenagers moved out of town, virtually eliminating them as suspects.

At one point, Buck himself was a suspect. But when questioned, he told a detective that his calves aren’t insured or financed; there’s no monetary motive for him to kill them.

Buck’s land is extremely desirable—he said a neighbor recently sold his ranch for $40,000 an acre—but no one has pressured him to sell the ranch. There’s oil there, of course, and the Birdsong family has leased part of the land to a drilling operation called Dallas Production for years. There are oil workers and company contractors on the property all the time. Buck said Dallas Production has been cooperative throughout the investigation. One of the company’s workers even showed him footage from the dashcam on his truck after he spied a suspicious car lingering behind Buck’s property. When the worker drove toward the car, it peeled out and sped away. Buck said he turned the footage over to detectives but never heard about it again.

As the investigation dragged on without surfacing any leads, Buck began to take matters into his own hands. After the first few calf deaths, he bought motion-triggered game cameras and placed them across his ranch, setting them to capture about ten seconds of video if anything—or anyone—set them off. Buck would check the cameras once or twice a week, poring over the footage, but the only thing the cameras caught were oil workers passing through his property to the wells.

After a fourth calf died, in 2014, Buck took a pair of night vision goggles that Becky had bought him for Christmas and went out into the pasture after dark, hoping to catch the perpetrator in the act. For four nights, he sat on a bucket behind the cover of the trees along his fence line, so that he could see almost the entire pasture, staking out his land through the night with a cooler full of water and Gatorade beside him. He was alone with his thoughts, and all the possible scenarios and unanswered questions began running through his head again and again. But by the time the sun came up, he’d be no closer to catching the killer than he was the first day he heard the terrible wailing of the mother cow. 

Buck Birdsong

The pond where Buck has found several murdered calves.

Photograph by Trevor Paulhus

Buck Birdsong

There are about fifty adult cows in the herd.

Photograph by Trevor Paulhus


The pond where Buck has found several murdered calves.

Photograph by Trevor Paulhus


There are about fifty adult cows in the herd.

Photograph by Trevor Paulhus

Last Christmas, Buck was on high alert. His daughters, their husbands, and his six grandkids had all gathered at the ranch, as they do every year for the holiday. The fall calving season had recently concluded, so Buck’s pastures were full of babies. He went out to patrol the ranch every few hours, driving the fence line. On Christmas Eve, he found one dead calf. The next morning, just before the family was going to open presents, Buck went out to the pasture for one more go-round, just in case. He found a calf on the ground, breathing slowly, with the dreaded gray-tinged scour streaking down its backside.

He called his daughters out to help him load the calf into his trailer, hoping to rush it to the vet. But the animal died before they even made it off the property. As his daughters cried, Buck walked off. “I’ll be back in a minute,” he told them. He drifted over to the shed by the ranch house and went inside, where he sat alone, seething with anger and frustration. When he emerged a few minutes later, he rejoined the family inside the house to open presents with the kids, trying with only limited success to hide his sadness. Later that night, after the grandkids were asleep, Buck slipped back out into the barren winter pasture and buried the dead calf in the dark.

“I think he just felt defeated,” his daughter Lori Aldredge said later. “It was like whoever was doing this got the upper hand on that day. They took something away from him on a day that was supposed to be so important. You know, they kind of . . . they got to him.”

After two more calves were killed that spring, Lori had had enough too. Grasping for something, anything, more to do, she turned to Facebook. “Anyone that knows me well knows that I’m a daddy’s girl,” she wrote. “I need HELP!” She wrote about the eighteen dead calves, as well as the complete lack of leads or suspects, and included a grisly photo of the latest calf corpse, which had to be pulled out of the pond where the animal had died.

The post went viral, piling up more than four thousand shares. Commenters largely expressed disbelief that the deaths could be murders. Many offered their self-proclaimed expertise as ranchers or vets, hoping they could provide the nugget of information they thought to be so foolishly overlooked by Buck and his family, the one that would finally close the case

Everyone had a theory or a quick fix. Put up game cameras, one suggested. (Buck had.) Was it blackleg? one commenter asked. (None of the calves exhibited symptoms of the fatal disease.) Leptospirosis? No. White snakeroot? Bad bull semen? Larkspur? Nightshade? Hemlock? No, no, no, no, and no. Get a Great Pyrenees guard dog. Get a Doberman. Buck has had dogs on his ranch, and they’ve never done much good. I’d sit out there all night with night vision goggles, someone said. Of course, Buck had done that too.

People were just trying to help, but as more folks shared the post, the theories became increasingly ugly. Don’t forget about immigrants in your area, one commenter said. They even shoot livestock thinking it’s funny. Several commenters suggested that animal rights activists were behind the killings. Another said someone must be dropping the toxic grain from a small airplane. One woman called Lori and claimed that a satanic cult was behind the deaths. Lori dismissed the idea at first, but the more she got to thinking, she figured maybe it wasn’t so crazy. After four years without any logical motives or leads, maybe it was time to consider that too.

Lori’s post spurred three local TV news stations to bring their crews to the ranch for the story. The Birdsongs waited hopefully for someone to call with a lead, but no one did.

“I’m preparing my mind that this is going to happen again,” Buck said recently at his dining table. “I’m hoping it doesn’t, but I’m preparing for it. I just wish they’d catch him and it would stop. I’m not so interested in prosecuting him and all that; I just want it to stop. Give us back our world.”

On a recent Thursday morning at the ranch, Buck drove out into the pasture, as he has so many times before, to see his cows. He hopped down from his truck and walked up to them, a hand extended to their muzzles. By this late in the summer, he had only two calves left unsold, so it was a rare stretch when he didn’t have much to worry about. Even the cattle seemed more at ease than they had in months. “Hey, mama,” he said to them softly, while they nuzzled their wet noses in his open palm. “Whatcha say, babies?”

With calving season again approaching, Buck knows that he’ll soon bring more babies into this world. He also knows that some of those babies likely won’t be long for it. He has considered giving up on ranching, and not just because of the streak of deaths visited upon his herd. He has already accepted that he’ll probably be the last in his family’s line of cattle raisers. His daughters already have careers and families of their own, and they likely won’t want to carry on their father’s business. But that’s a problem for a later time. Buck must first weather more immediate crises, like the dry spell currently choking his pasture or the ongoing trade war between the United States and China, which has prompted harsh tariffs on beef exports and could hurt profits for cattle ranchers.

Maybe he’ll just sell the whole herd, he thinks. Just plant pine trees out there. But he can’t bring himself to do it. “You can’t talk to pine trees,” Becky reminds him.

Back in the Birdsong kitchen, a low rumble rolled over the ranch. “Is that thunder?” Becky said. “Yep, I think so,” Buck replied. By this time of year, he’d usually be finished with his second cutting of hay and on his way to cutting a third. But he’d only cut once this year and was desperately hoping for a shower to replenish his pasture. “We need some rain,” Buck said. “We need some rain.”

Tags: Agriculture, Animals, Crime, Ranching, buck birdsong, calves, Cattle, Poison
Tags: Agriculture, Animals, Crime, Ranching, buck birdsong, calves, Cattle, Poison


  • Jana Mae

    I wonder why it is just the calves and not the mamma cows?

    • Jana Mae

      And if hunters are carelessly shooting into his property, I can see that as a reason for conflict.

  • Cristy De La Cruz

    This story breaks my heart. I hope he is able to solve the mystery. Is it possible that the cows have some type of genetic disorder or sensitivity to whatever crop (or something in the pond) in his fields?

  • PeterTx52

    shouldn’t that be “What is killing…” rather than Who?

  • PeterTx52

    so there is a toxic grain? what is the grain? has it been identified?

    • LaSargenta

      In the article, it explicitly says

      The one factor tying all of these dead animals together is the grain
      inside their stomachs, although investigators would rather not reveal
      the specific grain and the method they believe is being used to get it
      inside the calves, since it’s just about the only thing they have right
      now that bears any semblance to a lead.

      about halfway down.

  • Barbara Harris

    I find this heartbreaking! Here is an honorable and decent hard working man who loves his animals and someone is killing his calves off one by one. I truly hope that somehow, someone knows something and will finally speak up.

  • Martin G.

    That’s it? Where’s the rest of the story? I wanna find out what happened.

  • J J Rodrigues

    Looks like need 2 or 3barky guard dogs used to the cattle, and have their houses by the fence, also night vision cameras, and a dvr. Any corporations trying to take over. Sounds like someone bringing in bad grain at night hand feeding. Is it happening to any other herds? Am 2800 miles away,but doesnt sound very good. Any retired vets needing accomodation by the fence line, and some pay, see what is the source?

  • J J Rodrigues

    Its 2018 so you could use tiny or small drones with infrared night vision cameras, monitored at your house, also the the guard dogs should be same color as the cattle,and raised from tiny pups with the cattle and calves, sleeping with them, large pitbulls or mastiffs, and staffordshire terriers trained, should work. Any prowlers at night will get a surprise.

  • J J Rodrigues

    Water supplies- water hydro dams with covered fish nets as 11 550 yards high should be installed on rivers on both sides of the mountains,as on the Columbia, and others to provide water for fires and livestock, populations for Arizona, Texas, and California, and bring in Alaskan salmon for the new huge lakes.

  • Firefishe

    Have the boundaries of the property been expanded at the edges since the occurrences started? Have their been any encroachments over other, existing flora or forest area? If so–and if you use GIS, you might check that source–what has occurred, encroachment-wise, and to what extent? Examples: New pasture growing area expanded into a different type of land area, such as a forest, or marsh area; Removal of large stones, like very large boulders; Opening up of Karst topography, ie, a cave or other opening to the earth; The erection of new construction, like shacks, houses, the leveling of once-hilly areas, etc.

  • steve mitchell

    Wondering if any of the cow’s stomach contents have been examined somehow to see if they are ingesting the same toxic grain as the calves? Is this grain something native to the area? Is it a cultivated crop that is grown nearby? Could little critters be gathering this grain and caching it somewhere that the calves could ingest it? I find it hard to believe somebody is diligent enough to sneak past everyone and everything just to feed “poison” to some calves. I guess they could be creative and freeze the grain in a cylindrical shape and then firing those poisoned ice bullets out of a silenced air cannon located somewhere within range on a neighboring property… If you want more possible scenarios, I could brainstorm a hundred more. It sucks that this is happening, sucks even more that the cause of death is known, but not knowing HOW it is happening!

    • Michael A

      They have identified the grain found in the calve’s stomachs as one that he has never given them.

  • Michael A

    Very strange, one calf at a time—no cows. If someone put out poison (or a poisonous grain) they would all be in it unless they are feeding them out of a bucket. But a calf wouldn’t go near a stranger with a bucket, and momma wouldn’t permit it either.

  • Sylvia Bache

    Breaks my heart to read this. A good man and family enduring this heartbreak. Please keep up posted.

  • Andrew Rodenbeck

    The story does not reveal if Buck feeds any of the animals any grain, how much, how often, or by what method. But if he does feed them some grain, is it possible that the supply is intermittently contaminated? Is it possible that some grain Buck makes available to cattle generally is occasionally contaminated with the toxic grain? It may be a small enough quantity that the larger animals are marginally affected, only young calves are damaged and only if they are unfortunate enough to get a large enough dose. This would account for the randomness of the incidents, the lack of motive, the incidental targeting of calves, and the absence of any evidence of an intruder.

    A grain handling or processing facility may have mixed in some of the grain in error. Such unintentional contamination is unlikely to be evenly distributed. The solid grain particles do not diffuse like salt in water. Rather a slug of contamination accidentally entering a large container will tend to remain roughly together in a clump. So you might see no contaminating grains at all, until you see a few hundred all together.

    • Rachael Lefler

      It sounds like the problem is something in their feed is toxic to the calves but not to an adult cow.

      • Michael A

        Yes but he has many calves and they are dying one at a time on an infrequent basis. If it was that toxic you would think the others would be into it and show some symptoms as well. And he identified the grain from stomach contents and could tell that he never fed them that type of grain.

  • admiralcrunch83

    Is there a poisonous grain I don’t know about? I thought acidosis should be easily identified by LOTS of grain being in his belly.

  • Weena

    I don’t understand how these grains get on his property if there is nothing on the camera footage.

  • T Grabowski,uwcsi

    I agree with the game officers, ( examine the facts) at this point it is safe to say, a human is to blame. Religious or ritual killing groups would have left other clues. Animal rights groups would not target the animal. The actor must have knowledge about cattle and the toxic grain and that is the key factor. Examine or reflect back on what happened around the time the killing began. Business dealings, ranch hands, daughters boy friends, or want to be boyfriends. it could be as simple as jealousy or someone feeling ignored or slighted! The length of time the crimes have accrued prove an emotional connection. This is not someone randomly killing or accidental cross contamination of feed. This involves emotion. It is personal. Someone whom obviously needs mental help was in someway offended or feels offended. The family needs to sit down together, and think it through. Make a list of all possible actors include all possible persons and let the detectives rule them out. Might not hurt to run an apologetic plea for the responsible party to stop in the local paper. Who knows it might get a reaction out of him or her! T. Grabowski, uwcsi

  • Colby Felps

    Ok it’s been over a year now since this article was published. Did Buck find who is killing his cow’s?