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The Hérens breed of Cattle

Local & regional heritage

The preservation and breeding of this unique Alpine cattle breed represents a genuine agricultural, cultural and touristic added value for the Valais.

Sturdy and adapted to our climate, the Hérens cow is an excellent walker that moves easily in difficult terrain. They are mainly found in the Valais and the Val d'Aoste. These cows have a lively and combative temperament. They fight by instinct in order to establish a hierarchy within the herd.

Each spring, when they go up to the mountain pastures, they fight each other fiercely, head to head and horns against horns. This natural aptitude has given rise to the organisation of "cow fights" which attract large numbers of breeders and passionate spectators every year all impatient to discover which cow is to be crowned Queen.

In summer, the cows graze on the mountain pastures. You can see them in the alpine pastures of Tortin, Novelly, Siviez, Combatseline, Balavaux or at Combyre-Meinaz. In spring and autumn, they are in the different mid-mountain pastures of the region and they spend the winter in the warmth of the village cowsheds.

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