Wednesday, 12 June 2013

5th June: Preparations for our grazers

The Reserve dunelands are being prepared for our Autumn/Winter grazing program, the cattle will arrive in late September and remain on the Reserve for the winter.

Cattle grazing in the duneland in a previous year

Reserve staff and volunteers have been preparing the cattle corral - fixing the fencing and repairing the posts - if we didn't do this the cattle would be more likely to demolish the fence and escape! There is still lots to do before the cattle can be moved in safely. Remember it is very important that dogs need to be kept under control on a short lead around the cattle and other livestock.

Using cattle and sheep to graze the rough/rank vegetation is much less harsh than cutting and creates amazing botanical diversity - this is especially important for the orchids the Reserve is well-known for. Many visitors to the Reserve who are stunned by the flora here may not realise this is the direct result of managed grazing.

Another great reason to have livestock grazing on the Reserve is that they help to control invasive species such as Pirri-pirri bur.

Two sheep in their Reserve enclosure during a previous winter

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