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The question: Animals

Farmer Graham Bailey was cursing his pet Llamas this week after they knocked him down and broke his hip.

The beasts did little to help rescuers either by charging at air ambulance paramedics. What is your worst animal experience?

I once attempted to survey the line of a potential new road through a field of very inquisitive cows. They insisted on looking back down the telescope of my theodolite at me and obscuring the reading, licking my chainman's staff (ooh-errmissus), standing on the theodolite legs, and worst of all, nudging me from behind every time I put my eye to the telescope. I went home with a black eye, very inaccurate results and a grinning chainman.

Andria Hubbard, structural engineer, Exeter

Mosquito's. My wife and I were trying to camp at Karasjok on the Finnish/Norwegian border on the return leg of our cycling expedition to Nordkapp. The beasts attacked in cloud-densities comparable to McMidges, but each with several times the firepower.

Chris Johnson, 49, project engineering manager, Gloucester

A few years ago my stepmother kept a goose and a few chickens in a yard at the back of the house. I did not know how savage a goose could be until the first time I walked into the yard and got viciously attacked by a wild-eyed, angry bird with a beak like a pneumatic drill. I got my revenge though - a few days later we killed it and ate it for dinner.

Bruce Walton, 31, deputy contracts manager, Manchester

I started my working life as a paper boy. One particularly nasty household on my round owned an equally nasty Alsatian which probably starred in the Hound of the Baskervilles. Thankfully he was kept behind a fairly substantial fence. One day however, as I approached the letterbox, the dog appeared around the corner with frantic owner in hot pursuit. Just as his collar was being felt he lunged at me with saliva spewing from his mouth and hatred in his eyes.

Thankfully, I dodged the attack, only sustaining a glancing blow to the leg. On returning home, I recounted my tale of woe to my ever-so sympathetic mother whose only response was 'did he damage your trousers?'

Robert Pike, 41, project manager, Exeter

A site inspection for a new highway in rural Ireland brought the survey team into contact with boisterous herds of various descriptions - some running towards us, others running away from us. A particularly memorable encounter saw us stampeded by a herd of young cattle. At a distance of about 40 yards and still going like the proverbial steam train, somebody helpfully pointed out that the one in the middle seemed to be somewhat larger than the rest and also had a ring in the end of its nose. Survey team exit scene - very sharpish!

Simon Lawrence, 30, senior engineer, Cardiff

I was working out in the Sumatran jungle driving slowly along a track cleared through the jungle when suddenly a tribe of monkeys crossing the track smashed into the vehicle. It was over in a flash but I suspect there was over a hundred of them in one huge wave.

They did not bother to go round the vehicle but scampered over and under it. I do not know what was more of a shock. The suddenness of the 'hit' or that none of them sat on the vehicle and tried to rip off the aerial or wipers.

Andrew Worby, 54, solicitor and civil engineer, Bath

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