The cow that attacked two people in a south Auckland park has been put down, along with its eight-month old calf.

Cliff McMahon intervened when a woman was attacked by a protective herd in Totara Park, yesterday afternoon.

McMahon this afternoon remained in Middlemore Hospital after being trampled.

The animals were allowed to roam near the park's recreational trails and farm manager Peter Linton said there had only ever been one other confrontation in the past 18 years.

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He said, in that case, the animal was antagonised.

Linton said the cow and calf involved in yesterday's attack have both been sent to the slaughterhouse.

Auckland Council head of parks services Mark Bowater said staff visited Totara Park first thing this morning and provided assistance to Linton.

"We worked with them to identify an individual cow being overly protective of her calf. During calving season, cows are typically very protective of their calves and do not like people to get near them," Bowater said.

"We recommend anyone who chooses to go in parts of our parks with cows is extra careful during calving season, as it is a cow's natural instinct to protect their calves. Over this time people should keep their distance from cows, and ensure they never come between them and their calves."

Manurewa-Papakura Ward Councillor Daniel Newman was questioning whether the cow should have been there under the Reserve Licensing agreement.

"Clause 12.1 of the agreement states that the licensee may during the term graze cattle and sheep only on the land and for no other purposes. That clause prescribes that cattle must be de-horned and to a maximum of two years of age. Bulls are prohibited from grazing on the land at any time," he said.

"I have written to seek clarification of the age of the cow that was being grazed at Totara Park. Taking into account and maturity of cattle before breeding as well as normal gestation, it is unclear whether the cow was over the maximum age stipulated in the Reserve Licence agreement.

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"Indeed, the approximate age of all grazing cattle at Totara Park needs to be clarified. I have also clarification as to whether a bull has been grazing on the land in question."