As mentioned in previous articles, Parklands are working with grazing licensees to make our bush parks and trails safer for both people and livestock.

We also want community users of the bush parks and trails to be aware of their surroundings and understand that livestock are not necessarily benign beasts.

Entering a paddock with cows and calves puts people at risk. Parklands advise anyone who finds cows with young calves in parks we managenot to enter the paddock and notify us immediately at

Cows with newborn or young calves can be very aggressive to humans. They are capable of inflicting serious injury. Any cow, especially beef breed cows, can be aggressive at this time, even if they are normally placid.

A cow can become agitated if she believes her calf is threatened. The younger the calf, the more dangerous the mother. A heifer (a young cow calving for the first time) may be even more unpredictable.

A cow may threaten or attack when:

  • You walk between the calf and the mother. You may be entirely unaware you are doing so if, say, the calf is sleeping behind a tussock.
  • A dog is present, especially if the dog is off lead, irritating the cow or calf, or gets between the cow and her calf,
  • Their calf is bellowing for any reason, and you are in the vicinity.

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