A herd of sheep at a farm in northern China’s Inner Mongolia region was filmed continuously walking in circles for 14 days, China’s state-run newspaper People’s Daily reported, showing a video showing dozens of sheep walking in circles. almost perfect circles.
The strange behavior, captured by a CCTV camera shows the herd walking in the clockwise in an almost perfect circle.
In the recordings it is observed how the flock circulates, while some sheep are left out of the rotation and others are motionless in the center of the circle. The most incredible thing, both for the farm owner and for the thousands of users who have already seen the clip, is that the mammals are said to be in perfect health. It has no visible condition beyond its attitude of walking on the same axis .
The People’s Daily reports it the sheep were healthy and that the cause of the strange behavior remains a mystery.
The owner of the herd, identified as Ms Miao, said the show was started by some sheep before the others joined, according to UK portal Metro. Although there are 34 corrals on the farm, only those of the pen number 13 they acted this way.
The experts of the British veterinary company Molecare farm veterinarians point out that the exact cause of such behavior is not known, but do not rule out that it is the effects of listeriosis, a bacterial disease.
This disease causes swelling on one side of the brainmaking animals walk in circles or suffering paralysis on the affected side.
Zoological specialists explain that this mysterious dance is not that rare and this type of behavior can be too a defensive instinct.
What do they do it for? Animals do this movement create an impregnable fence to protect the most vulnerable of their pack from predators.
In the center of these circles are usually located females and their young then the males crowd around her in large numbers. Between this and the continuous movement they make it difficult for the attackers to attack, who generally give up and go in search of other prey that are easier to devour.
The fact that animals already have the protection of humans and real fences like those seen in the video that accompanies this note, the sheep don’t seem to care if that’s the reason.
Matt Bell, professor and director of the Department of Agriculture at the University of Hartpury, Gloucester, England, says the phenomenon is perhaps simpler, but just as puzzling.
“Sheep seem to stay in the pen for long periods, and this could lead to stereotypical behaviour, repeatedly circling in frustration at being in the pen. and limited in their ability to move. This is not good. Then the other sheep join in, since they’re herd animals, and join their friends,” Bell told Newsweek.
According to Science Alert, this is a common symptom in captive wild animals, especially big cats. It is known as zoochosis and can lead to repetitive behaviors that seem to serve no purpose. Once a herd animal starts behaving like this, it can even spread like a strange contagion.