It is unknown where they came from or why they were dumped in the sea.
Thanks to our commentators Carl and Niall, we can post the solution. See below.
On Tuesday, police launched an investigation into the origin and deaths of five dead cows that washed ashore during the past week.
“This is a highly unusual case,” Jimmy Modén, spokesman for the Skåne Police Department, told The Local. “The first report came on New Year’s Eve, and then another on January 4th, and then a third cow was reported on the 5th. Yesterday we received a call about yet another.”
The first cow was found in Gislöv harbour, and since then bodies have washed up in Smygehamn, Beddingestrand, and Falsterbo, stretching over 56 kilometres of the southern Swedish coast.
Some had bound feet and their ears were cut off, possibly to prevent identification from ear tattoos with which cows are regularly marked. But one may have enough remaining to be traced. The cows may have been dumped offshore (which is illegal). If they were diseased, the owner may have tried to avoid reporting it. Investigators may be able to determine if they were alive prior to dumping which would mean additional animal cruelty charges.
UPDATE: (12-Jan 2014)
Lebanese livestock carrier Abou Karim IV is believed to be the vessel which threw overboard at least 14 dead cows in Baltic sea, soon after leaving Kiel on Dec 27 13.
The animals were ill and there may be no law against dumping them.