We started to graze the cows on the moor today. This has been an ambition of ours for a long time, and has not been easy to put into action. Firstly, people are generally unsure about it; are the cows going to chase them? How inconvenient is it going to be for neighbouring farmers, walkers and riders? The answer is – not too sure yet, but I am trying the simplest way I can so that hopefully people will be able to support us. This has involved using rope tied across 3 main exits, with ~ 50 metres of plastic posts and one strand of electric wire tucked along side the lane, and is very unobtrusive. It’s all temporary and can be removed when the cows have moved on in the grazing rotation.

It does require my 2 sons to keep and eye, hence you see them chilling out and whittling gorse on the moor, it also gives us time to cut down old gorse bushes and stack them into log and furze piles, for collection later on in the summer.

Here’s a pile of furze. This stuff makes fantastic tinder for lighting the wood burners. In the past gorse was collected for fires, and bracken was collected as bedding for animals. We burnt a lot of it last year and gorse burns really hot – great for bread/pizza ovens!

By Lisa Guy

I am an organic beef and wildlife farmer

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