Lightning is blamed in the deaths of nine cattle south of Neligh sometime either late Thursday night or early Friday morning.
Steve Busteed said he was surprised to find the cattle dead when checking the pasture Friday morning, especially considering he'd lost an animal by lightning recently. That, however, was just one - not nine.
"I haven't seen anything like this," he said. "We had one (struck) in a feed yard a few weeks ago, so I guess lightning does strike twice. I haven't seen that many struck at once."
Busteed said the cattle, which are kept on the George Busteed Trust located in the northern Oakdale Township, weren't seeking shelter by trees. He said they must have been huddled up together when lightning struck.
"They were on the side hill right out in the open. It's not good," Busteed said.
While Busteed does have the cattle insured, he'll still have to pay his deductible on the animals. He said the deaths have been verified by a veterinarian as having been caused by a lightning strike.
A slow-moving storm dropped up to six inches of rain on southern Antelope County during the overnight, causing many small streams to flood. Busteed said 3 1/2 inches fell on the property with these cattle.