Insight & Analysis

On the moo-ve!

Published: Sep 2021

Injured Swiss cows have been airlifted to the bottom of their Alpine meadows ahead of annual parade


In a bizarre spectacle, around a dozen injured Swiss cows have been airlifted to the bottom of their Alpine meadows ahead of the annual parade in Uri, Urnerboden. The farmers organised helicopter rides off the ridges, in the Klausenpass region in the centre of the country, to an area more accessible to a more conventional mode of transport.

They were strapped into a mesh harness suspended by a length of cable below the chopper. The farmers were waiting below for them guiding the ropes to bring them safely back to land!

Meanwhile, the more fit and able livestock made their way down the mountainside by hoof. Far less glamorous!

Farmer Jonas Arnold said: “One reason for the helicopter transport is that you can’t reach some pastures by car, and the other is that some cows are injured, and so they don’t have to walk all the way down.”

He added: “It was only a short calm flight. I didn’t notice any difference between the ones that flew and the ones that walked normally.”

In total, the heard is made up of about 1,000 cows, so only 1% of the group were given the James Bond treatment – what a story to tell their friends at the annual cow parade.

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