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Home / Entertainment with bulls during fiestas

Entertainment with bulls during fiestas

In the bullfighting countries, but also in other countries such as Brazil, Panama, and Nicaragua, thousands of ‘fiestas populares’ (popular feasts, mostly patronal festivals) take place, in which bulls and other animals are abused and/or slain in the name of a patron saint under the blessing of a local priest. In some countries, the government regulates these types of events. In practice, however, there is often little supervision.

Each year more than 30,000 bulls, cows and calves are abused and slain during patronal festivals. The vast majority of this type of festivals take place in Spain. In the years before covid-19, an average of about 18,000 bull festivals took place every year.

Examples of patronal festivals:

Pamplona (Navarra , Spain)
During various bull runs in Pamplona every day of eight consecutive days six bulls are chased through the streets to the arena. These bulls are slain in the evening during a bullfight. The running of the bulls of Pamplona is the most visited feast of its type in the country.

Toro de la Vega (Tordesillas , Spain)
A bull was chased by hundreds of men on foot and on horseback, stabbing the animal with long lances and other weapons, until the bull bends his legs. When he was on the ground, the person who gave the ‘fatal’ stab got a trophy: the tail and/or testicles of the bull. After this the animal was finally killed. For many years CAS International protested in Spain against Toro de la Vega. In 2016 Toro de la Vega was prohibited and changed in a feast without blood: a bull run named Toro de la Peña.

Embalse de Toros (Tlacotalpan, Mexico)
Seven or more bulls and/or cows get liquor administered and are forced to swim in a deep river, tied to boats. Once back on land, they are hunted down and assaulted. This event is prohibited but it takes place every year.

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