Conford Grazing Project begins
It was with great excitement that at the end of May 2023, three Longhorn cattle were released onto Conford Moor, seeing the return of conservation grazing to the site for the first time in around 70 years.
Conford Moor is made up of areas of fen, wet heathland, acid grassland and stands of ancient alder carr. Due to the hydrology and geology of the land and its historic management, it is a site of great ecological interest.
Up until the 1950s, the area was grazed and was home to many rare plants, and wildlife including the now endangered marsh fritillary butterfly. Since cessation of grazing, the site has dried out due to the invasion of scrub and trees, leading to loss of habitat and a decline in species.
The cattle on Conford are contained by temporary electric fencing and will be moved between grazing compartments on a rotational basis. They will be present on the Common for approximately six months of the year between spring and autumn and their numbers will never exceed four.
The grazing will ensure that areas that have been cleared already remain open, and will encourage the return of a diverse range of species that were last recorded in the 1982 Biological Report, steered by the extensive knowledge of the late Dr Francis Rose, who lived locally in Liss and was widely regarded as the greatest British field botanist of our time.
N.B. Dog owners must keep their dogs under control, and not allow them to enter the enclosures where the cows are.
'Take the Lead'
On 27th June a ‘Take the Lead’ pop up appeared on Ludshott Common.
It was organised by the South Downs National Park, in association with
the National Trust, under the 'Heathlands Reunited' scheme.
It's purpose was to educate dog owners on control of their pets, and
encouraging them to pick up after them.
It was a very successful time with lots of positive conversations with
local dog walkers.
There is another planned for Ludshott on 18th August 7:30am – 9:30am.
Dunelm Car Park
The car park re-opened on 19th June, after being used for forestry extraction. It has been re-surfaced and realigned to improve accessibility and parking. A new noticeboard will be erected as soon as possible.
The fencing around the perimeter of Ludshott Common which is part of the conservation grazing cattle project will begin to be erected about the second week of July, weather permitting.