Sheep – The nature reserve quiet workers

Every year we take a hundred sheep out to St Serfs. The reason we do that is to stop the island from scrubbing over to maintain the habitat for nesting ducks and create a perfect goose grazing pasture. This has been going on for many years. Sheep are safe from dogs and other disturbance to get on with what they do best, eating grass.

We use out big siver boat Daphnia to take the sheep out. She was custum built for the job.


The sheep sit patiently in the boat during short crossing. My view through the dirty window of the cab


The sheep are delighted to seee dry land and straight away start grazing the lush grass of St Serfs

For the last couple of years our Grazier Scott has been entering a sheep from St Serfs into the Kinross show. The sheep on the island are always in superb condition.

The last week of july we set out to the island to check the sheeps feet and check them for worms and select a couple of beasts for the show.


The sheep look great. Not one bad foot and no deworming is required.

‘This is Jimmy,’ says Scott. ‘He kens sheep like.’ Scott has bought Jimmy in to help select a prize winner for the show.


The sheep wonder past so Scott, Jim and Jimmy can have a close look.

The process is very slow and considered. There is a lot of – ‘Thats got a good back end’ and ‘not sure about the blotches on the tail.’

I wondered off round the island to see what is going on. I return an hour later and they’ve got it down to 5.


The final five are closely scrutinised


Just two are selected


Livestock at the Kinross Show

Unfortunately the St Serfs Blackface only managed a third. I don’t think Scott has given up and I’m sure he’ll enter another sheep next year.

Many thanks to all of you who came up to see Alan and myself on our stand at the show. Thanks for all the positive feedback about the path and the other work we do.

Thanks to Peter for the picture of Alan and myself at the Kinross Show.

About @jeremysquire

Naturalist living in Kinross-shire originally from Gloucestershire. Twitter @Jeremysquire
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One Response to Sheep – The nature reserve quiet workers

  1. Pingback: A few pictures from last week | Loch Leven NNR

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