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

Port Hardy RCMP discuss reconciliation with First Nations

The RCMP “want to be emotionally respectful of the past while still trying to uphold the laws.”

VIDEO: Wounded Warrior Run leaves Port Hardy on eight-day trek down island

The team’s fundraising goal this year is $250,000, which is double last year’s goal.

Claims already being staked after GeoScience BC report released

In the first 15 days following the report, a total of 34 new claims were staked.

Bradshaw’s Photo Highlight: Waulkwass River

A kingfisher and some trumpeter swans came by close enough to get a few shots.

Port Hardy RCMP investigating drug offences

Both vehicle occupants may face future charges related to the suspected drugs and cash.

VIDEO: Wet’suwet’en supporters vow to keep protesting at B.C. legislature

Supporters say they will continue ongoing action to hold government accountable

VIDEO: Province promotes ‘lifting each other up’ on 13th annual Pink Shirt Day

Students, MLAs, community members gathered at B.C. Parliament Buildings Wednesday

Prepare for new coronavirus like an emergency, health minister advises

About 81,000 people around the world have now become ill with COVID-19

B.C. residents in Wet’suwet’en territory have right to police presence: Public Safety Minister

Nevertheless, Bill Blair said officials remain ‘very anxious’ for the barricades to come down

Winnipeg police investigating graffiti on RCMP and other buildings

Manitoba Justice Minister Cliff Cullen denounced the vandalism

B.C. seniors’ watchdog calls for better oversight after recent problems at Retirement Concepts care homes

‘There is no financial incentive right now to be a good operator’ - Isobel Mackenzie

Blockade reroutes traffic on Pat Bay Highway

About 80 people from four major Peninsula First Nations blocking major highway

Trucking company fined $175K for Kootenay creek fuel spill

Decision handed down last Friday in Nelson court

B.C. Liberals call for ban on foreign funds to pipeline protesters

Sierra Club, Wilderness Committee back Coastal GasLink blockades

Most Read