Report from George Redpath
Pupils of Wormit Primary, who use the natural trail nearby to walk to school, have been advised by their head teacher to use another route for the time being following a report that the Mysterious 'big cat', which is now commonly thought to be a lynx, had been seen near the trail last week.
The cat, which has been seen in various parts of North East Fife over the past few weeks, was confirmed as being a lynx last week by Mr David Hope of Ceres, who watched it for 25 minutes in a field to the east of the Ceres-Cupar road. Prior to Mr Hopes' sighting, the cat had been seen at the Bow of Fife and St.Andrews. Another lady from St.Andrews has reported seeing a strange animal prowling in her garden when she drew her kitchen curtains one night. In another sighting the cat was seen crossing the St.Andrews-Anstruther road shortly after midnight.
The first sightings of the animal, which occurred in May, took place around the Forgan roundabout on the Dundee-Kirkcaldy road. One motorist said he had struck the cat a glancing blow, and had left the car to investigate the bump, but promptly got back into his vehicle when he saw the size of the animal.
If the cat is a lynx, then its ideal food would be rabbits, hares and pigeons. However, when commenting on the sightings, Mr Jim Cormack, the S.S.P.C.A. Inspector at Cupar, said there had been an exceptional number of domestic cats disappearing in St.Andrews recently, although he stressed that it might have no connection with the 'big cat'.
Mr Cormack also said at the time that domestic cats could grow exceptionally large, and made mention of one he encountered in Edinburgh which was the size of an average dog. All sightings at that time had taken place at night, when the summer 'twilight' darkness could distort sizes and appearances.
Fife Herald, 24 th June 1988
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