Shock for breeder as lightning kills valuable mare

AN Irish draughtmare found dead yesterday may have been killed by lightning on a farm in Co Kerry during a severe thunderstorm.

Owner John Mulvihill of the Red Fox Inn, near Glenbeigh, on the Ring of Kerry, was clearly distressed yesterday at the loss of the animal.

“She was a beautiful specimen, standing at 16 hands. She had an excellent pedigree and would have been ready to start breeding next year,” he said.

“She was a pure pet, very gentle with a great temperament.”

He was shocked when he found the four-year-old mare lying dead in a field, with its stomach distended and blood coming from its nostrils.

“It looks as if she got a massive belt of lightning. There were some fierce claps of thunder and lightening here on Tuesday afternoon, with power cuts over a wide area,” said Mr Mulvihill.

He purchased the valuable mare, named Muckross Maud, as a foal from the Muckross Traditional Farms in Killarney 3½ years ago.

“I’m sickened by what happened to her. It would be very hard to find a mare of the same quality. She had unbelievable presence,” Mr Mulvihil said.

A Kerry bog pony which was in the same field was unharmed, according to Mr Mulvihill, a leading breeder of bog ponies, a rare species.

Meanwhile, upwards of 1,000 ESB customers in the general south Kerry area, including Kenmare and Caherciveen, were without power until yesterday afternoon. Roads were dangerous in some parts of the county, following heavy showers, but improved throughout the day.

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