Photographer's Note

Névache, Hautes-Alpes.

On the hiking trail in the country of Mount Tabor, a sign invites us to keep dogs on a leash to avoid scaring potential sheep. Pastoralism is a long tradition in the Southern Alps, and sheep farming still plays an important role in the local economy. At altitude, the mountain pastures during the summer welcome the flocks of the valley, like those of southern Provence.

The breeding as practiced in the French mountains is of extensive type, the animals feed on large grassy expanses. Such farming method helps maintain the mountain and preserve biodiversity.

In the Alps, especially the Southern Alps, shepherds face the wolf, who prefers to hunt sheep, easier preys than the chamois and ibex that inhabit these mountains. To protect their animals, the shepherds have got patous dogs, true guardian angels herds. These dogs are bred from an early age with the sheep, and they consider themselves as such. In the pastures, the patous often come to meet hikers who would approach too near the herd. Their aggressivity is sometimes a source of conflict between shepherds and hikers. This sign reminds that the mountain is not only for tourists, it is also a working tool for someones.

The mountain is a sharing space and it is important to respect all its users.

dta, pajaran, holmertz, adramad, ChrisJ oznaczył to zdjęcie jeko użyteczne

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Additional Photos by Delphine Digeon (tatadalou) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 754 W: 113 N: 1142] (7459)
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