New farming scheme

Thursday 12th November 2009

A new ?1.9 million Higher Level Scheme was agreed and signed today between Natural England, 17 graziers (commoners) on The Long Mynd and The National Trust. The sheme will last for ten years, is the largest of its kind in England and will ensure a healthy conservation for this, the largest Site of Special Scientific Interest in The West Midlands and part of Shropshire Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. The aim is to improve conditions for the hill's biodiversity by reducing the number of sheep that the "commoners" can have on the hill. We hope to increase more bird species and numbers (e.g.Merlin, Hen Harrier, Golden Plover, Curlew, Red Grouse, Snipe, Tree Pipit, Grey Wagtail, Whinchat and Stonechat). A better mix of short grass mixed with long grass, heather, bilberry and in some valleys an increased number of scattered trees. Bracken will be reduced. The last 10 years have already shown a halt to heather loss and an increase in diversity of wildlife. There are great times ahead!

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