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People milk idea of zebra cow and moo-ve past methane

Burt's Eye View

If I believed everything I read, I’d think that cows are evil, bent on destroying the world by bovine burps and flatuence.

I grew up on a farm in cow country, and trust me, the cows had nothing on us pack of boys when it came to burps, gas-passing and other odoriferous hobbies.

I do not view cows as evil. But eccentric? Absolutely.

To prove my point, let’s review just a few of the latest cows-gone-wild headlines.

“Uncle John’s Bathroom Reader: The World’s Gone Crazy” reports a Dutch veterinarian was fined 600 guilders (about $240) for converting an ordinary cow into a four-legged flamethrower.

The vet said he merely wanted to demonstrate to the skeptical farmer how much gas cows pass, so he held a lighter to the bovine’s backside. Well, she let one rip. The cow took off like a rocket, and resembled one, too. Her jetting around the barn set hay bales ablaze before the cow’s thrusters went out.

The cow was unharmed, but about $80,000 of damage was caused to the barn near Lichtenvoorde, Uncle John’s said.

• Speaking of methane, cows may be fed bales of seaweed instead of hay to cut back on the emissions.

Researchers at the University of California-Davis who added small amounts of the ocean algae sweetened with molasses into cows’ feed reported that methane emissions from burping, passing wind and making manure were reduced by more than 30 percent.

If this idea takes off, our pastures will be full of sea cows.

• The “creatures coming out of the mist” were escaped cows that made a British Columbia couple’s doorbell camera go crazy.

The UPI reported this month that the doorbell camera sent quite a few alerts one night that someone was trespassing on the couple’s front porch.

Resident James Bailey told the news agency that the next morning, he reviewed the security footage and at first, all he could see was fog. Then an eye. Two eyes. A head. A suddenly, a whole cow on the porch, with another nearby. The cows had escaped from a neighbor’s pasture.

The cows pirated no packages on the porch.

“Uncle John’s” also reports that back in 2009, there was a cow that didn’t jump over the moon. She leapt onto the roof.

A Blagdon, England, resident came home to find smashed roof tiles in her yard. The invader turned out to be a cow, who jumped onto the roof at its lowest point, strolled across the rooftop, and when it was done destroying tiles and taking in the view, jumped off.

• Medical News Today reported this month that scientists are painting white stripes on black cows.

The theory is that one of the purposes of a zebra’s stripes are to camouflage the critters against predators, including biting flies.

A 2019 study found that horses dressed in stripes attracted fewer flies than horses without. So the researchers got out their white paint and slapped stripes on Japanese Black cows. Fewer flies attacked the zebra cows.

Jeremiah 13:23 tells us that a leopard cannot changes its spots. Can a cow?

As far as eccentricities go, I believe a zebra cow or a sea cow are far more desirable than a flame-thrower cow — unless you crave a glass of warm milk before you go to bed.

— Send your cow stories to the old farm boy at burtseyeview@tribtoday.com, on the Burton W. Cole page on Facebook or @BurtonWCole on Twitter.

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