Last May, this humble bovine in Upper Bavaria, Germany, went missing. For months she hid in the woods, prompting a Facebook page and cash reward for her return -- and becoming an international media star in the process. And now, of her own free will, she’
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MÜHLDORF -- She set a new standard in slow-moving media frenzies. Her name is Yvonne, and in case you havn't heard, she became Germany's most celebrated M.I.A. dairy cow this spring after she got past an electric fence in her grazing pasture, disappeared in the woods near the tiny Bavarian commune of Zangberg – and somehow attracted 28,000 fans on her German Facebook page and garnered international coverage.
The saga – and chase – are now over, with a happy ending after a farmer discovered a cow he thought was Yvonne in one of his pastures and alerted officials in nearby Mühldorf. The number on the animal's ear tag confirmed its identity. Yvonne appeared to be calm and in good health, a spokesperson said. She had apparently befriended four calves who were grazing in the field.
Any attempt to approach Yvonne was avoided until Henning Wiesner, the former director of Munich's Hellabrunn zoo, could get there with a special tranquilizer gun that does not harm animals. Yvonne was to be tranquilized for her trip to nearby Deggendorf, to the Gut Aiderbichl farm facility run by an Austro-German animal protection group.
The group had bought the former dairy cow after her escape. When all attempts to round her up failed, it decided to let her roam the woods freely. The tactic worked, and Yvonne eventually emerged on her own. In her new home, she is expected to live out the rest of her days pleasantly in the company of her sister Waltraut and son Friesi.
Gut Aiderbichl is also home to Ernst the ox who was taken to the area where Yvonne was thought to be hiding to see if he couldn't tempt her out. However, the initiative, like all other attempts to lure her out, failed. For weeks, helicopters hovered above the area where Yvonne was hiding trying to monitor the cow's movements, as search volunteers combed the woods. A tabloid even offered a reward to whoever found the cow.
Yvonne's fame grew to include Yvonne songs, and Yvonne merchandising like the T-shirts reading "Esst mehr Gemüse! Freiheit für Yvonne!" (Eat More Vegetables! Freedom for Yvonne!).
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photo - Facebook