A pair of cows from Sisters Creek Simmentals, located south of Quesnel. Submitted photo

Cow was struck and killed by lightning, Quesnel farmer says

The cow was killed Aug. 23 during a “horrific hailstorm” south of Quesnel

A farmer south of Quesnel is sharing her own story of an animal’s death by lightning after hearing of a girl in the Lower Mainland whose horse was killed during last weekend’s storm.

Lynda Atkinson, who owns Sisters Creek Simmentals in Kersely, commented on a 100 Mile House Free Press Facebook post about a Fraser Valley teenager losing her animal, saying, “We had a cow killed too.”

The Quesnel Cariboo Observer caught up with her to learn more.

“It was a horrific hailstorm,” Atkinson says of the Aug. 23 squall.

“It was only a narrow strip but it was really bad for all of us.”

Her farm manager, Fred Harder, says he noticed something was wrong when he went out to supplement the cows’ feed with some grain on Sunday (Aug. 25).

“The calf was with a bunch of cows and it was bawling,” he says. ”Which means momma’s not around.”

He took a good look for the missing cow but was unable to locate her until Monday morning.

While Harder, who has been working on farms for almost 60 years, has seen animals struck by lighting before, he notes this case was odd, as there were hardly any marks on the stricken animal.

“The only thing was her [udder] was basically blown off. She only had one teat left, and where it had been blown off, it was a luminous green colour.”

Also of note was the lack of predation.

Ordinarily, a large dead cow would attract critters from miles away, but this was not the case for this cow, which had been dead for three days.

“There had been no predation at all,” Harder says, “other than a couple pecks on her tongue. Her eyes had not even been pecked, which was quite odd.”

The dead cow was not the only mishap to befall the farm.

“Our horse shelter took off too,” Harder says. “A 12-by-16 [foot] horse shelter with a small door was picked up and carried back 25 feet and flipped over onto its roof.”

The farm’s neighbours also suffered big losses to their crops and properties due to the powerful storm.

Harder says the type of weather is unique for the Cariboo.

“It’s rare for here,” he says. “In other parts of the country where it’s more wide open it’ll happen more frequently, but a hailstorm like what we had here was strange.

“It was just a strip all the way across the country. It knocked trees down all over the place. Anything that was standing in gardens was completely destroyed.

“It looked like somebody had come from up above with a 12-gauge pellet gun and ripped it apart.”

READ MORE: B.C. teen’s horse killed by lightning in weekend thunderstorm



ronan.odoherty@quesnelobserver.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of Sept. 27 to Oct. 3

World Farm Animals Day, Drink Beer Day and Virus Appreciation Day are all coming up this week

COVID-19 cases grow to 13 at B.C. First Nation near Fort St. James

“This is very serious,” says Nak’azdli Whut’en Chief

Cullen confirmed as B.C. NDP candidate for Stikine despite party’s equity policy

Former Tahltan Central Government President Annita McPhee said the process made her feel “abused”

Citing stability, B.C. Premier calls snap election for Oct. 24

John Horgan meets with Lieutenant Governor to request vote

QUIZ: Do you know what’s on TV?

Fall is normally the time when new television shows are released

Canadian ski resorts wrestle with pandemic-vs.-profit dilemma as COVID-19 persists

Few are actually restricting the total number of skiers they allow on the hill

Victoria-area RCMP locate high-risk sex offender thanks to help of taxi cab driver

Scott Jones wanted on a Canada-wide warrant, ‘a risk to women and girls,’ police say

A (virtual) walk around the world by 88-year-old B.C. man

George Doi says it’s simple: ‘I like walking’

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

End of CERB means uncertainty for some, new system for others

As of a week ago, the CERB had paid out $79.3 billion to 8.8 million people

Horgan, Wilkinson trade barbs over MSP premiums, health care at campaign stops

Horgan called a snap election for Oct. 24 earlier this week

PHOTOS: 2nd calf in a month confirmed among Southern Resident killer whale pod

Center for Whale Research said they will eagerly await to observe the calf to evaluate its health

Most Read