Tuesday 10 December 2019

Dramatic rescue as bulls plummets off cliff

Tramore RNLI, Tramore Coast Guard and Waterford Animal Welfare rescuing a stranded bull. Photo RNLI
Tramore RNLI, Tramore Coast Guard and Waterford Animal Welfare rescuing a stranded bull. Photo RNLI
Tramore RNLI, Tramore Coast Guard and Waterford Animal Welfare rescuing a stranded bull. Photo RNLI
Tramore RNLI, Tramore Coast Guard and Waterford Animal Welfare rescuing a stranded bull. Photo RNLI

Sarah Stack

A second bull has been rescued from near death, except this one wasn’t on the way to the slaughter house.

As Benjy the 'gay' bull was saved by supporters, Tramore RNLI was involved in a rescue operation of a different kind.

The drama unfolded on Sunday evening when local gardai contacted Tramore RNLI to inform them that a bull had plummeted off a cliff near well known local landmark, the metal man, and had swam to a rocky ledge near Newton cove, a few hundred metres away.

RNLI and coast guard crews rushed to the scene and tried to approach the bull, but his position was hard to access in fading light and rising tides.

Rescuers believed it was too difficult to carry out a rescue at that time and waited until the following morning before trying again.

At first light the next morning Tramore Coast Guard, RNLI with Andrew Quinn from Waterford Animal Welfare were back on the scene with a plan to bring the bull to safety.

A rope was secured to the animal and the oars of the lifeboat used to gently usher the bull down off his rocky ledge and into the water.

Once there, he started swimming and came alongside the lifeboat before being guided by the crew and Andrew into a nearby cove, where the bull was met by his grateful owner.

“We have a bit of a history here in Tramore RNLI with animals,” said callout Tramore RNLI Helm Dave O’Hanlon.

“Over the last few years we have gone out to a calf, a whale, a dolphin and a group of puppies.

“We are pleased that the animal was not too distressed by the ordeal and that working with our colleagues in the other services we were able to render assistance and bring about a happy outcome. “

Earlier this week "gay" bull Benjy, from Charolais in Co Mayo, was saved from slaughter after the terminally ill co-creator of The Simpsons donated thousands towards its rescue.

The bull was being fattened for the butcher after his farmer owner complained he was not sexually interested in cows.

His plight came to the attention of animal activists, who said he was more interested in bulls, last week through a local newspaper report.

After launching a fundraising drive to save Benjy, Sam Simon, the Hollywood producer behind The Simpsons and other hit comedy series such as Cheers and Taxi, stumped up the €6,250 needed to buy the bull.

The bull will be transported to the Hillside Animal Sanctuary in the UK in time for Christmas where he can "live out his natural life with peace and dignity", said activist

Benjy the bull's owner complained he was not sexually interested in cows (AP)
Benjy the bull's owner complained he was not sexually interested in cows (AP)

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