Cows die dur­ing ma­jor storm

The Guardian (Charlottetown) - - THE ISLAND - BY MITCH MACDON­ALD 5)& (6"3%*"/

A light­ning storm on the week­end is be­lieved to be the cause of death for six bred cows and four calves.

Beef farmer Blair Henry said he had a herd of about 65 cat­tle prior to a pair of light­ning storms that be­gan Fri­day evening and re-ig­nited early Satur­day morn­ing.

Henry said when he and his wife, Linda, woke up Satur­day morn­ing, they no­ticed a group of cows in the area look­ing for their calves.

“We re­al­ized there was some­thing wrong,” said Henry, who dis­cov­ered the dead cows un­der a row of spruce trees along a fence line.

All of the grown cows who died had been bred and were any­where from one to five months preg­nant. There was also dam­age to the fence, which Henry has since fixed.

That dam­age was not caused by the light­ning, but the cows them­selves af­ter be­ing hit.

“Some had got­ten thrown on top of the fence,” said Henry. “Some looked like they were thrown right over it.”

Henry, who has been farm­ing for more than 50 years, noted that he had pre­vi­ously lost one cow dur­ing a win­ter light­ning storm more than 20 years ago.

He had never heard of any­one los­ing such a high num­ber of cows in a sin­gle light­ning storm.

“I couldn’t be­lieve it, I just couldn’t be­lieve it.”

The re­main­ing cat­tle are just now get­ting back to nor­mal be­hav­iour, with some be­ing heavy with milk af­ter los­ing their calves.

“For about three days they were pretty up­set,” he said.

Henry said his rough es­ti­mate of dam­ages was about $15,000.

“I don’t know re­ally what it will cost to re­place them,” said Henry, adding that he’ll be look­ing pur­chase new cat­tle im­me­di­ately. “Whether I’ll be able to (right away), it’s hard to say.”

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Canada

© PressReader. All rights reserved.