Cat­tle moove in to wood­land to keep down un­der­growth

Kentish Express Ashford & District - - News - By He­len Fair­ley

These ma­jes­tic beasts can once again be seen graz­ing near the town cen­tre.

The Kent Wildlife Trust (KWT) has moved four High­land cat­tle to the Ash­ford War­ren and Hoads Wood na­ture re­serve as part of its on­go­ing con­ser­va­tion ef­forts.

High­land cat­tle thrive and breed where no other cows could ex­ist and are re­mark­able for their ver­sa­til­ity and longevity. They have a nat­u­ral and unique abil­ity to con­vert poor graz­ing ef­fi­ciently.

The hairy quar­tet who have taken up res­i­dence on the War­ren were moved from Hoth­field Com­mon where a herd of around 15 an­i­mals graze. They will re­main there for around two months as part of the area’s sus­tain­able man­age­ment plan.

Ian Rickards, who is KWT’s Ash­ford area war­den, ex­plained that wood pas­ture ar­eas like The War­ren and Hoth­field, where you should have big trees widely spaced, would have tra­di­tion­ally been grazed by such crea­tures.

He said: “With­out man­age­ment, the gaps (be­tween the trees) get filled up with veg­eta- tion. We are help­ing to re­store the bal­ance.”

The cat­tle scheme, that sees an­i­mals moved around Kent, is partly man­aged with the help of vol­un­teers.

If you would like to get in­volved visit www.ken­twildlifetrust.org.uk

Pic­ture: Andy Clark

High­land cat­tle have re­turned to The War­ren in Ash­ford

Pic­ture: Andy Clark

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