Every Spring, Spanish bullfighting enthusiasts gather at stockbreeding ranches to watch the traditional `Tienta' -- the occasion for testing the bravery of two-year-old fighting bulls.
Every Spring, Spanish bullfighting enthusiasts gather at stockbreeding ranches to watch the traditional `Tienta' -- the occasion for testing the bravery of two-year-old fighting bulls. The annual ritual was filmed on a ranch near Aranjuez in central Spain.
The bulls, getting their first experience of the ring, are pitted against the horse and pike of the mounted picador. The brave bulls sell for between GBP50 to GBP 70 (120 to 168 dollars).
One of the ranch owners, Don Vicente Guzman, was on hand to note down his assessment of each bull, assisted by the opinion of an elderly bullfighter. The two-year-olds selected by them will first be used as seed bulls.
And for breeding purposes, two-year-old cows also have to undergo tests of bravery -- the theory is that bravery is hereditary and a good cow will therefore pass on this quality to her young.
After entering the ring against a picador, the cows are also tested by matador friends of the owners using the cape or muleta. It's useful practice for the bullfighters and the best way to assess the form of the animals.
The bravest animals are expected to attack the cape without being distracted, without falling (an indication of week legs) and without swinging the head from side to side (an indication of variable eyesight).
Cows kept for breading have the ends of their horns out off as a mark of identification. The rest are fattened and sold for meat.