Farm animals roam Westside neighborhood

Jacksonville woman says cows, bulls wander streets

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Residents are concerned about the number of cows and bulls roaming through their neighborhood on the Jacksonville’s Westside.

Neighbor Sylvia Buchanan took the bull by the horns and contacted the News4Jax I-TEAM about the problem, sending photos and surveillance video of the farm animals walking through the streets and on driveways.

“I have evidence through of them coming through my yard. Security cameras capture them coming through and trampling through my yard. Sometimes my granddaughter’s outside playing. Oh, it’s a hazard. I’m very concerned,” Buchanan said.

She said there are continuing problems with the bovines roaming through the neighborhood is off Seaboard Avenue bording the Wells family farm, which is on 100 acres.

“I'm not trying to make problems with the people that own the farm. I love animals, but I don't want them roaming this residential neighborhood,” Buchanan said.

Buchanan said she’s worried about the safety of her grandchildren, so the I-TEAM found out how the cattle are getting into the neighborhood and what’s being done to keep them from wandering the streets.

The answer came from the farm owners who said teenagers are breaking in on their farm land, leaving the fence down so that the livestock escapes.

“Teenage kids that like to roam and ride the four-wheeler so they cut the fence,” said Michael Wells, cattle owner. “It has been a problem with everybody. The cows got out. They scare people, which I don’t understand.”

Wells and his family run the farm. They invited the I-TEAM on their property to see firsthand the temperament of the bulls and cows they care for.

“I would love for every kid in Jacksonville to come and look at them,” Wells said. “People stop all the time to look at the animals.”

Whenever they notice the fence is down, their first priority is to fix it -- and all they can do is run the kids off if they find them breaking the fence, Well said. 

The Wells family said they want to reassure the neighbors that the animals would not harm children, and they are friendly and loving -- even the bulls.

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