Flower-rich grasslands, once a familiar feature of every farm, are part of our culture. Most have developed alongside humans because of livestock grazing and traditional hay cuts.
With almost 10,000 acres of nature reserve across Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Northamptonshire, sheep and cattle are essential to conservation; grazing slowly removes scrub growth, creating a varied pasture, vital for pollinators such as bees and butterflies, as well as birds and mammals. And both cattle and sheep are key in managing grasslands where mowers can’t reach because of anthills, steep slopes or ridges. Rare and traditional breeds, with their hardy nature, are particularly more adept at coping with rough terrain and our livestock includes Manx Loaghtan and Hebridean sheep and Red Poll and Highland cattle.
Avid readers of Local Wildlife magazine will have learned of the exploits of Lass the sheepdog in our summer edition. If you would like to see Lass in action then have a look at our video. Lass, together with five other sheepdogs, is crucial to our work, but the contribution of our grazing animals is easily underestimated. As well as the staff time involved in working with and caring for sheepdogs and livestock, there are food supplement bills to consider as well as veterinary checks, vaccinations, shearing, water supplies, hurdles, and fencing to keep animals safe.
By making a donation today, you will be helping us look after the animals grazing our sites, keeping our nature reserves in the best condition for wildlife.
The Trust is reliant on our members and supporters. Together with you we can bring people closer to nature, in a land rich in wildlife. Thank you for your continued support.