Heifer rescued after falling down century-old Gippsland mine shaft

Heifer rescued after falling down century-old Gippsland mine shaft

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The farmers used an excavator to help remove the heifer.

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BIG JOB: Gary Wallis took this photo of Fish Creek farmer Frances Tooehy shining a light on a heifer stuck down a shaft on their property, Cyathea.

BIG JOB: Gary Wallis took this photo of Fish Creek farmer Frances Tooehy shining a light on a heifer stuck down a shaft on their property, Cyathea.

A group of South Gippsland farmers had a challenging night on Saturday after finding a cow had fallen down a 130-year-old gold mine.

Fish Creek farmers David Pilkington and Fracnes Toohey found the heifer several metres down the shaft on a property they leased from Gary Wallis at Fish Creek.

The quick-thinking couple contacted Mr Wallis who had an excavator on the property, and within the hour, they commenced digging a pathway so it could walk out.

"Our best hope to excavate the side of the shaft to create a ramp," Ms Toohey said.

"It took us a few hours to get her out but considering the ordeal, she very luckily scrambled out unscathed."

The mine was used in the 1880s by the Yanakie Gold Mine Company.

Ms Toohey said the heifer managed to fall down the shaft after a short in the fence meant some cattle were able to sneak through the historic area.

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