At this time of year, Wilden Marsh is a grazing animal’s paradise; it’s a warm, sunny and carefree life under cloudless powder blue skies, with lots of shady copses to lounge about in when the sun is too strong. The herd likes to spend its days roaming as much of the marsh as possible; searching out tasty morsels in hidden nooks and crannies and amongst tall grasses, and rummaging through extensive areas of varied scrub. They have access to the whole north marsh at the moment, with the River Stour and Hoo Brook meandering gently through its lush green landscape. They have the Swamp and North Pond Chain to wallow in, and soft grass beds to relax in and sleep on. What more can cows possibly want, apart from a visit from the bull?
It can be a bit of a trial having to keep and eye on four overactive calves trailing along on important grazing forays. I suppose it is like us taking our children to work: a recipe for stressful mayhem. So the calves are left in a safe, shady area with a responsible adult in charge, and today’s responsible adult is Bluebell. In the photograph, Bluebell has assembled the calves on a partly dried out pond bed, and she is teaching them how to safely graze bulrushes.