Report from Mike Inglis
THE LATEST claimed sighting of the 'big cat' which has been sighted around North East Fife appears to have had more of a canine connection.
This was revealed yesterday by Fife Police, who said that an examination of paw prints found on farmland near Cupar recently had proved inconclusive.
Over recent years there have been around 20 reported sightings of people seeing large black cat-like animals over a wide area of North East Fife, but positive proof has never emerged.
The latest incident occurred when the farmer had an encounter on a remote track, and prints were photographed and made the subject of a plaster cast.
A police spokesman said yesterday that zoological experts had been unable to say exactly what kind of an animal the prints belonged to.
'In fact the greater likelihood in this particular case is that they were the print of a large dog,' said the spokesman.
It has been said that the animal is similar in appear to a puma, and apart from its NE Fife sighting there have been similar reports from as far afield as Kinghorn and Kelty.
'Each report is recorded and while the possibility of there being a large cat can not be discounted we are still awaiting positive evidence of its existence.
In each reported case it seems clear through its elusiveness that the animal seems keen to avoid human contact, and it should be stressed that there is no inclination to attack anyone.'
Police have said that any sighting should be reported to PC George Redpath at Cupar Police Station on 01334 418700, where information is being logged.
Dundee Courier and Advertiser, Friday, September 25, 1998
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