Grazing Animals for Conservation
Image copyright Nicola Hawkins
Learn about the essential elements of livestock handling, welfare and habitat management.
Led by Emily Newton and Ashlea Kirk
Mon 10 Wed 12 Aug 2015
Dorset Wildlife Trust manage Kingcombe Meadows Nature Reserve and Powerstock Common with their own herds of cattle and sheep as part of the conservation management plan. This course offers a unique opportunity to learn about how this is achieved, directly from our team, on a variety of SSSI habitats including heathland, meadows, grassland and woodland. In addition, you will have the opportunity to visit offsite habitats and learn about the benefits and challenges in this approach.
During the course we will look at habitat management, stockmanship, animal welfare, issues with public access and managing remote sites. We plan to visit the following sites to give a range of habitats:
• Kingcombe Meadows Nature Reserve 180 hectares of grassland, including chalk, acid and neutral meadow.
• Powerstock Common Nature Reserve 112 hectares of ancient woodland, acid grassland and rush pasture managed for nature.
• National Trust heathland reserves managed with horses and cattle.
• Privately owned SSSI wet woodland managed with cattle.
• The Isle of Portland - goat grazing landscape partnership project to clear scrub on inaccessible sites.
Note: there will be a fair amount of walking over rough terrain most days. Please be prepared for this and for some standing as you listen to discussion points.
Emily Newton has had a lifelong interest in livestock, from growing up on a dairy farm in Devon to developing a particular interest in traditional breed cattle whilst studying at The University of Reading. This interest has developed through her work for Natural England and the Rural Payments Agency and most recently with Dorset Wildlife Trust as Grazing Animals Officer. She currently works as the Conservation Officer with the West Dorset Team working on a variety of projects providing advice to local landowners.
Ashlea Kirk grew up on a livestock and arable farm in Dorset, home to his father’s pedigree Angus herd. He developed his farming knowledge through studying at Sparsholt College and working on the family farm. Ashlea brought a commercial perspective to his role as Dorset Wildlife Trust’s stockman, which provides the modern balance required to manage the nature reserves for both conservation and farming requirements.
£280 pp includes 2 nights sole occupancy accommodation, full board including a home cooked breakfast, tea/cake, lunch and 3 course dinner, all tuition / activities.
£199 pp includes all of the above except accommodation and breakfast.
The course will start at 1pm on Monday with lunch, followed by the first afternoon session.
The course will finish at approximately 4pm on Wednesday with afternoon tea.
What to bring:
Please bring; suitable clothing for being outdoors and walking, notepad and pen/pencil.
Coming from further afield, why not extend you stay with B&B.
Download the Information Sheet - or if you require further information call the Booking Office 01300 320684.
Please read our Terms and Conditions before booking.