DOZENS of birds have been stolen from the aviary at Tannaghmore Gardens.
Twenty-five cockatiels and two budgies worth more than £800 were stolen at the weekend.
Craigavon Borough Council, which owns Tannaghmore Gardens, said staff had been left “devastated”.
Police are probing the theft which appears to have happened some time between Friday night and Saturday morning. The locked door to the cage, based in the car park of Tannaghmore Animal Farm, was forced open.
“We are really upset at the theft of these stunning birds,” said Ruth Mason, Grounds Maintenance Supervisor at Tannaghmore.
“This aviary has always been the focal point of the farm when visitors first arrive, and children in particular loved to spend time watching the birds and enjoying the variety of colours.
“It is a real blow for the staff and visitors as well as to the actual farm to have had them stolen.
“The aviary has been in place at Tannaghmore for 15 years and this is the first time something like this has happened.
“We would appeal for anyone with any information on the theft or anyone who may be offered to buy a bird in suspicious circumstances to contact the PSNI.”
“The cage can be repaired but council will have to consider whether to replace the birds following this incident.”
Police in Lurgan are appealing for information following the theft of these birds.
A spokesperson said: “Some time between 8.30pm on Friday, April 12 and 8.30am on Saturday, April 13, an aviary was entered and 25 cockatiels and two budgies taken. The birds are various colours and quite distinctive.”
Police are appealing to anyone who has information in relation to the theft or whereabouts of the birds to contact them on 0845 600 8000. They would also like to hear from anyone who is offered birds of this description for sale in suspicious circumstances.