Walkers – beware of cows

The news that a woman was attacked by cows last month, in a field not far from here, just goes to show that one needs to careful walking fields at this time of year.
The fact is that cows with calves are as dangerous – and, some say, even more dangerous – than bulls.

Every year brings another story of walkers being trampled and killed by mothering cows, so it’s fortunate that the woman we mentioned was only injured.  The former Home Secretary David Blunkett got three broken ribs after being trampled in 2009.
Two people are killed every year by cows, some of them farmers.
However, you are also more likely to be attacked if you are walking a dog – as it is the dog that worries the cows.

… in Draycott

Draycott has miles and miles of footpaths, so it’s not surprising that we spotted, just this week, mothering cows with their calves – standing right on a footpath in west Draycott.
We did the discreet thing, keeping to the field fence and walking well away from the cows as much as possible.

cows with calves

The herd, including cows with calves, was on the right of way

The law is, by the way, that mothering cows are not deemed a threat – so farmers have every right to place them in a field with a footpath.
The law (The Wildlife & Countryside Act 1981) only applies to bulls – and bans the keeping of them in fields crossed by a right of way.

cow with calf

The mother cow keeps the calf close

So – what is the official advice?  This what the NFU says:
*Don’t be afraid of cows BUT – be mindful, they are protective of their young
*If you feel threatened, let your dog off the lead.  The cows are more interested in the dog than you
*Take a walking stick with you. Don’t strike the cows, but use it to keep them away from you
*Be bold and walk straight through them if the cows move towards you (except mothers with calves)

Meanwhile…
Also, at this time of year, there are lots of inquisitive young bullocks.  They may act more wildly than cows, and chase you or run around you, but actually they are (cross-fingers!) generally harmless.
So, walk firmly, with a good occasional shout at them to frighten them away.  Their curiosity will make them come back each time… but, just keep walking and keep your nerve!

Walks

If you are interested in walking in Draycott, click here for a list of walks.

***
Want to comment this item?   Just use the comments box – near the bottom of this page.
(The form will ask if you wish to put in your email address.  You don’t have to, and it is always kept private anyway and never published, but, if you don’t add your email, that means you might miss any responses to your comment).

If you find the photos on this webpage too small to see properly, all you have to do is double-click on the photo itself, and it will double in size immediately.

Advertisements

One response to “Walkers – beware of cows

  1. Pingback: Walkers – Beware of cows | Milwich Parish Website

Write your comment here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s