Video: The sheep are going!


There was a lot to hear and see on Sunday in the city center of Madrid – because: the sheep were gone. Their shepherds used ancient cattle trails at the weekend to bring their animals from A to B – but also to draw attention to their concerns. Around 2000 Merino sheep and 100 goats were there. "We want to remind that the transhumance still exists, the shepherds still exist," said this shepherdess. "We have not disappeared somewhere in the forest, there is a law that protects us in Spain, our trails are protected and the animals have the right of way, but as you can see, people are worse than animals and will not let us through." "It's really hard work," said this young shepherdess. "You have to get up early to feed the animals, and some have other work on the side." Once a year, the shepherds exercise their ancestral rights to the use of the roads – these are the result of an agreement with the city of Madrid in 1418. In October, shepherds bring their herds to more southern pastures. A few centuries ago, the path still led through untouched countryside. But today, animals and shepherds have to cope with traffic, noise and the many onlookers.


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