Large cattle thefts like this are not unheard of, but Joel Rotz, senior director of state government affairs for the Pennsylvania Farm Bureau, said it is a sporadic problem.
"I think it's the kind of thing that happens periodically every year.
I don't know that it's a really prominent problem in any part of the country, but it does happen," Rotz
"Obviously, the more valuable the animal, the more likely it is to happen.
If they're just cashing in for meat prices, meat prices are excellent right now."
The value depends on several factors, but selling for meat could fetch somewhere in the area of $1,000 per cow.
Selling bred heifers for milk might net about $2,000, Rotz
"I would say it would seem likely that anyone who actually does this has to be someone who's involved in the livestock industry and has the equipment to handle this," Rotz
"It's hard to believe someone who doesn't know much about it would do this."
In terms of prevention, more farmers are microchipping their herd, according to Rotz
said this will not help if someone tries to sell an animal at public auction where they do not have a microchip reader to identify the animal.
, who is from the Chambersburg area, said he
cannot recall any other large cattle thefts like this in the area.