AsiaWire / Tacheng fire service
This footage shows Chinese firefighters working into the night to save nearly 20 horses which became stuck in a muddy bog while drinking from a watering hole.
The accident happened in the prefecture of Tacheng, which is in Ili Kazakh Autonomous Prefecture in China’s north-western Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region, on 3rd April.
Dramatic rescue images released by the local fire service shows an owner’s 18 horses covered in mud while the entire herd is stuck in the muddy puddle.
A team of 10 firemen were sent to assist the herdsman who tried in vain to lead the horses out using rope.
The exhausted animals can be seen with their legs stuck deep in the mud, and many are collapsed on their side after hours of struggling.
Rescuers tie ropes around their legs and necks and pull them out the bog with force, with the tired horses still finding it hard to stand despite being freed from the watering hole.
The fire service said nine horses, all of which were covered in grey drying mud, were pulled from the watering hole after they lay down sheets of wire mesh for the animals to walk on.
As daylight faded, the remaining nine were saved when a tractor brought in wooden boards to use in an operation which continued into the night.
The Tacheng fire service said all 18 horses were saved in about three to four hours.
The unnamed owner reported: “The horses came to drink water but became stuck in the mud.
“All 18 of them were stranded in the watering hole, but, thanks to everyone’s help, they were freed in just over four hours.
“I’m very grateful.”
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