Spanish Shepherds Protest with Flocks in Madrid Streets Reply

Shepherd protest Madrid

Shepherds threatened by urban sprawl, modern agricultural practices

CBC.ca–Shepherds guided a flock of 2,000 sheep through Madrid’s streets on Sunday in defence of ancient grazing, droving and migration rights increasingly threatened by urban sprawl and modern agricultural practices. Tourists and city-dwellers were surprised to see the capital’s traffic cut to permit the bleating, bell-clanking parade to pass the city’s most emblematic locations.

Shepherds halted at the old town hall so the chief herdsman could hand authorities 25 maravedies — copper coins first minted in the 11th century — as payment for the crossing. They then continued past Puerta del Sol — Madrid’s equivalent of New York’s Times Square — and past the Bank of Spain headquarters on their way to Retiro Park.

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