Cattle moove to pastures new!
Published on Thursday, 14th June 2012
A herd of cattle, which is helping to preserve Chasewater Country Park’s valuable heathland habitat, has been moved to a new area of the park
Lichfield District Council's countryside team has packed up the five dwarf cattle, which have been on loan from a local farmer since January, and moved them from a field on the north shore of Chasewater Country Park to a new area of the Site of Special Scientific Interest.
The small herd of cattle will be calling the new field home until winter. The field is next to the former site, and makes up the largest area of heathland on Chasewater.
Here the cattle will continue grazing on the vegetation that is damaging and killing the rare heathland plants, which the council would have to remove manually if it were not for the hungry cows.
Councillor Alan White, Lichfield District Council's Cabinet Member for Development Services, said: "By grazing on the tree shoots and grass, cattle help us to manage this important and rare landscape. This natural heathland management means we do not have to employ contractors to cut back the vegetation, which is expensive and not such an effective way of increasing the range of heathland plants and wildlife.
"Because the herd of cattle is doing such a good job, we will be bringing more cattle to two more areas of the country park later in the year. These will still be open to the public, but we would once again kindly ask anyone visiting the new grazing sites to follow the Countryside Code, remembering to keep at a reasonable distance from the cattle, not to feed them, and to keep any dogs under control."
Using animals to graze on the land is part of Lichfield District Council's heathland restoration programme, which is funded by grants from Natural England.
For more information on the conservational grazing on Chasewater, please contact Chris Walsh, Lichfield District Councils Biodiversity Officer, on 01543 308164 or 07803832375.