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Buffaloes Tranquilized After Roaming Five Days

November 5, 1987

SOUTH JORDAN, Utah (AP) _ Two 1,500-pound buffaloes that broke out of their pen and roamed through Salt Lake City suburbs and farmland for five days have been tranquilized and returned home.

The animals were not only hard to track, but also uncooperative.

″You can’t herd them,″ said Brant Jones, whose father, Otto Jones Jr., owns the buffaloes. ″All you can do is spread out and suggest where to go.″

The animals trampled fences, and one charged a rider on horseback before being rounded up Wednesday.

Otto Jones has raised buffaloes on his South Jordan farm for years and has a herd of about 40. His son said four broke out Friday night, apparently after deer got into the corral and spooked them. Two returned on their own, but the other two, bulls 3 and 4 years old, headed for the hills.

Friends and neighbors helped the family track the animals for two days until the trail cut through an elk herd near the foothills and was lost, Brant Jones said.

On Wednesday they turned up near a West Jordan subdivision. When police tried to corral the bulls in a yard, the buffaloes simply trampled a chain link fence and lumbered away.

″They just looked at that fence and went right through it,″ said West Jordan Officer Tim Sessions.

The Utah Division of Wildlife Resource officers tried to shoot the animals with tranquilizer darts, but the buffaloes moved out of range.

A Jones family member successfully hit the two animals on a farm west of South Jordan. They were loaded onto a horse trailer and returned home.

The family said although buffaloes have escaped before, they have never caused quite so much trouble in getting back home.

″He usually calls them right back in with a bucket of grain,″ said neighbor Mike Crane, who assisted in the chase.

87 1419EST