A 1,300-strong flock of sheep had to be rounded up by police in the Spanish city of Huesca after their shepherd fell asleep.
According to city authorities, the police were alerted to the presence of the extremely large flock attempting to negotiate the streets in the centre of Huesca at around 4.30am on Tuesday when a local resident dialled Spain’s 112 emergency number.
The dozing shepherd was meant to be keeping the animals in check outside the environs of the city while he waited for the clock to strike 7am, when he was due to guide the sheep northwards through Huesca towards Pyrenean uplands where his flock will graze during the hot summer months.
The police eventually found the herder, who was still peacefully slumbering. Together the embarrassed shepherd and police officers were eventually able to extract the sheep from the city and return them to their pastures.
The shepherd was following an ancient herding route, known as a ‘cañana real’, which passes right through the city of Huesca, a provincial capital in northern Spain. Such routes still exist all over the country and shepherds fill the streets of Madrid with their flocks one day each year in a symbolic defence of the herding tradition.