IF YOU thought lynx could be a problem, bet you didn’t know tigers are on the loose in Aberdeenshire?

At least that’s what farmer Bruce Grubb (24), thought after fearing one was loose in his cow shed after spotting a striped creature crouched on a ramp in the shed.

Bruce, who moved into his cottage on the farm, near Peterhead, just three weeks ago, had invited pals round for a house-warming when the drama unfolded last Saturday night.

He left his guests and girlfriend, Amy Brooks, while he popped into the shed to check on his 200 pregnant cows. Bruce told reporters: “I was on duty because the cows could drop at any time, so I wasn’t drinking. I flashed my torch in the shed and saw the tiger sitting there. I had a real ‘hairy’. I was stone cold sober – drink had nothing to do with me thinking it was real.”

Bruce ran back to the cottage and phoned the police. Six police cars – including an armed response team arrived – and there was a stand-off with ‘the beast’ for about an hour. But when the tiger still didn’t move, Bruce decided to take a closer look. “I drove right up to it with my truck and that’s when I knew it was a toy ... I had been worried it was going to attack my cows.”

The police took it away, saying they wanted to keep it as a mascot. “I’ve no idea who did it. I don’t know if they thought they were being funny or if they wanted to scare me. I felt a bit silly for calling the police but I thought it was a real emergency. We’re laughing about it now but it was scary at the time.”

Old and young party goers

YOUNG FARMERS have always been known to throw a good party – and even former Young Farmers who last donned a white coat to do stockjudging at the Highland decades ago, showed last week that they’re still up for it.

More than 200 of all ages met up at the Dunblane Hydro to celebrate the 80th birthday of the SAYFC and 40 years of the International Travel Trust, which helps send youngsters across the globe. So, the 80:40 dinner was a huge success and was ably fronted by Sandy Wilkie, the former president, and Suzie Dunn, the current chairman.

A well-thought out keynote address was given by RHASS chief executive, Alan Laidlaw, who lauded the work done by both organisations during theirs and his lifetime.

But, after their role in the 75th anniversary celebration in the Hydro – was it really five years ago? – the surprise of the night and star of the show was a wee ‘flash mob’ concert from 50-odd ladies and gentlemen from the Farmers Choirs. But it was not without a hitch!

Compere for the choirs, Keith Henderson, laid on his inimitable introduction, but had to wait a few embarrassing moments for the choir’s star songstress, Jennifer Picken, to arrive on cue.

It would appear that a last minute ‘comfort break’ was the reason – just as well Keith didn’t know that at the time!

Getting your goat

WHILE THE Polis in Aberdeenshire were in a stand-off with that big cat (see our cartoon story), the collective strength of the Royal Welsh battalion is still looking for its regimental mascot, a goat.

Their old mascot died last September and so a sortie was undertaken recently to capture a replacement specimen to head up the Welshies.

The squaddies scoured the Great Orme, in Conwy, Wales, where a wild Royal herd of Kashmir goats is kept, but to no avail. They’ve seen the one they want, but they just can’t seem to catch him.

“He’s a cheeky-looking chap. He’s got a lovely quiff on the top of his head ... he’s the one we want,” said the regiment’s goat major, Sgt Mark Jackson.