A surprisingly cute herd of bison trotted through upstate New York on Friday after they escaped from a farm near Albany. In the video above, taken by NBC, their jaunt through the town of Bethlehem is oddly serene and uplifting. Just try and watch it and not feel some joy for the creatures as they explore their local and alien surroundings for perhaps the first time ever.

Sadly, things did not stay serene. According to WNYT, the herd of 15 “trampled a fence” and hit the highway. And, because the 1,000-pound animals can be unpredictable, people were warned to stay away.

Things ended tragically. The AP reports that ultimately, all 15 of them — which included 2 calves — were shot and killed after authorities decided that “tranquilizers would not be effective, and no portable corrals could hold the animals.” Even darker, still, is that the animal’s owners were the ones to fire the bullets, the Albany Times Union reported.