Austrian state broadcaster ORF reports that a bolt of lightning has killed 17 cows and calves that had huddled under a tree to escape a rain storm.

The broadcaster on Wednesday quoted herdsman Georg Buchegger as saying only one of the 18 animals that sought shelter survived and was uninjured. Its website showed the cadavers strewn under the tree.

The storm struck on Saturday over the alpine pasture near the town of Strobl, east of Salzburg.