November 15, 2016 3:02 PM EST

Three cows that were left stranded on a tiny, elevated island in New Zealand following an earthquake have been rescued after spending a full day marooned.

The animals’ owner led them to safety on Tuesday by creating a passageway once the area was deemed stable from landslides, according to CNN. “It was a difficult exercise,” farmer Derrick Millton said. “We dug a path for them, and once they realized what was happening they meandered their way across to safety.”

The cows’ plight made international headlines after a helicopter captured footage of the two adults and a calf perched atop a small piece of land. The rest of the field the cows were standing on collapsed in landslides on Monday.

The cows’ conditions are unclear.


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