Pyrenees hiker (85) killed by charging cows
An 85-year-old hiker has been killed and four others injured, including two children, after they were charged by a herd of cows in the Pyrenees.
The tragedy occurred on Tuesday afternoon close to the French village of Azet as a party made their way up to the Col d'Azet peak in south west France.
All are thought to have disturbed the cows, including ones with young calves, grazing beside a high mountain path.
Pascal Sancho, from a nearby mountain rescue centre, said the hiker died after being knocked to the ground by one of the cows.
"Cows descended from the high pastures, and charged into the group," said Mr Sancho. "One of the cows, accompanied by a calf, rushed straight into the man, who fell over with serious injuries."
The man, who has not been named, was rushed to hospital in the town of Pau where he died soon after admission.
The four others injured, including children aged three and five, were also taken to hospital where they remained under observation overnight.
All are thought to have been injured by the initial charge, rather than because they were trampled or mauled by the animals.
Mr Sancho said warnings were frequently issued about the aggressive cows who live in the Pyrenees during the summer months.
"People need to keep their distance, and not approach the cows," said Mr Sancho. "They are not pets."
Pyrenean cows are generally of the Bearnaise and Blonde d'Aquitaine races and are aggressive during the summer when their calves are with them.
Locals, including farmers, often accuse visiting tourists of harassing the cows, so making them more angry