Thursday, 1 October 2020

Let the grazing begin!

This morning under leaden autumnal skies the familiar yellow cattle trailer pulled by a tractor arrived at Lindisfarne National Nature Reserve containing very special cargo – 30 cows. Over the next few months they will be roaming the 110 hectares of the links on Holy Island as part of our conservation grazing works. The dunes are reknown for their botany and so these living lawnmowers provide a valuable service for the Reserve, digesting all the rank grass; clearing the way for the full floral diversity of the dunes to bloom come spring. This area would be far too large and undulating for us to be able to cut mechanically.
Already getting stuck in to the grass!
Arriving onto the dunes

These cattle have been specifically chosen for their docile nature but there are still a few things to be aware of when entering the dune system.

 • As is always the case around livestock please keep dogs on leads at all times and keep to existing paths and desire lines. 
• Please remove the seed heads of any Pirri-pirri bur that have become attached to your clothes or any dog fur. Warning signs about this plant can be found at the main access points into the dunes 
• Please don't startle or try to pet the cows.

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