(File photo)

Sundre RCMP investigate shooting of Ya Ha Tinda Ranch horse

Police believe a horse that was shot near Sundre was mistaken for a game animal.

On Nov. 16, a horse belonging to Ya Ha Tinda Ranch was found dead and both Fish and Wildlife officers as well as the RCMP were called in to investigate.

RCMP determined in a preliminary investigation that the horse was standing in thick spruce trees and was shot from about 150 to 200 metres, on the Ya Ha Tinda ranchlands.

A field necropsy was completed by a Fish and Wildlife officer and determined that the horse was shot in the chest area with a large calibre rifle. Based on the field necropsy, it is believed the horse was shot sometime between Nov. 13 and 15.

According to police “there is the possibility that this was an accident due to mistakenly believing the horse was a game animal.”

The horse was a 20-year-old quarter horse that was still used in active duty. Parks Canada trains all of its service horses at Ya Ha Tinda Ranch, the only federally-owned working ranch in Canada.

Sundre RCMP are encouraging anyone involved in the incident to come forward. Any information in relation to this incident or with information identifying those responsible should contact Sundre RCMP at 403-638-3655 or local police.

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