Farmers In Pakistan Use Cranes To Move Rooftop Cattle Herds

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You’ve probably never seen a cow suspended in the air by a crane before, but in Karachi, Pakistan, it is a common sight.

The city is the country’s largest and the burgeoning population and lack of available agricultural plots mean many farmers choose to keep their livestock on rooftops.

Farmers use cranes to move their cattle from rooftops. Credit: Getty
Farmers use cranes to move their cattle from rooftops. Credit: Getty

However, the Muslim festival of Eid al-Adha starts next Sunday, which means farmers need to get their cattle down in order to send them to livestock markets – which is where the cranes come into it. With the aid of a harness, the cattle are lowered from multi-storey buildings, presumably quite perplexed all the while.

Eid al-Adha marks the prophet Ibrahim’s willingness to sacrifice his own son for Allah and the occasion is celebrated through the sacrifice of an animal. The slaughtered animal is divided into three parts, with one part going to the poor, one part given to family and the final part kept at home.

So if you’re passing through Karachi and you see a cow suspended from a crane, then you are doubly entitled to say ‘Holy cow’.

However, the unusual Karachi cow-carrying system might not go so smoothly if they had a Knickers to deal with. Yes, that’s right, Knickers, an absolutely massive cow in Australia who went viral last year.

Holy cow. Credit: Getty
Holy cow. Credit: Getty

Standing at 6ft 4inches tall – the same height as basketball legend Michael Jordan – and weighing an ungodly 220 stone (that’s the same as a Toyota Hilux) the Holstein Friesian avoided the dreaded visit to the abattoir, instead growing old on Lake Preston feedlot in Myalup, close to Perth.

Owner Geoff Pearson said Knickers was a standout from an early age.

He said: “He was always a standout steer from the others, a bit bigger than the rest.

“When he was young, when we first got him, we had a Brahman steer [a breed of cattle] which was a friend of his.

“So his name was bra… so we [had] bra and knickers. We never thought he would turn into a big knickers.”

Big old Knickers. Credit: PA
Big old Knickers. Credit: PA

But according to reports, Knickers isn’t quite the biggest cow around, that honour goes to 6ft 5inch Bellino who was measured in 2010 in Rome and holds the Guinness World Record for being the tallest cow in the world.

Indeed, a dairy farmer later claimed that Knickers wasn’t even that special, he was just allowed to live a lot longer than your average steer (cow that’s had his balls chopped off) and pictured next to loads of younger cattle of a smaller breed.

So perhaps Knickers-not-a-glory… does that work? I’m not sure.

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