Cows cast away by Hurricane Dorian found alive on NC island return home


A photo of a Cedar Island “sea cow” (Photo: Carolina Wild Ones via Facebook)

HARKERS ISLAND, N.C. (WNCT) Three wild cows that miraculously showed up on the North Core Banks of Cape Lookout National Seashore, have returned home to Cedar Island to be reunited with their herd.

Park staff, in partnership with Ranch Solutions, LLC., and Morris Marina Ferry Service, worked to round up the cattle in what turned out to be about a two-day operation beginning yesterday, lasting until Friday morning.

The wild cows were corralled into a cattle trailer that was loaded aboard a vehicle ferry. 

From there, the cattle and their wranglers were transported safely across the almost 4 miles of Core Sound to the mainland. 

Upon arrival at the ferry landing in Atlantic, the cows were taken a short drive up to NC state highway 12 to their home grazing grounds to be reunited with their stock-family. 

“It took a lot of folks coming together to make this happen, and we are happy the cows made it home to Cedar Island,” said Cape Lookout National Seashore Superintendent, Jeff West, “I am pretty sure they are too!”

The park would like to thank Ranch Solutions, LLC., and Morris Marina Ferry Service for their help in getting these cattle home. 

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CAPE LOOKOUT, N.C. (AP) — A trio of castaway cows has been discovered on North Carolina’s Outer Banks, where they apparently washed up after swimming for miles to escape Hurricane Dorian’s storm surge.

Cape Lookout National Seashore officials think the stranded cows swam up to 5 miles during the September storm before being found near Cape Lookout this month. The cows belong to a herd that roams freely on Cedar Island, across the sound. When Dorian generated an 8-foot “mini tsunami,” it washed them and dozens of other animals away, including 28 wild horses that died.

Seashore spokesman B.G. Horvat told McClatchy news group the cows are grazing peacefully after a harrowing feat of survival, but they need to go home. He thinks they’ll have to be sedated for the boat trip.

Information from: The Charlotte Observer,

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