With the second lockdown being followed by tier 3 restrictions Tophill Low has seen yet another long closure. Not only did we shut the doors to the public but also to our volunteers who generously donate roughly 13,000 hours a year to help us keep on top of our habitat management programs around the reserve. Considering their absence and to help keep things ticking over we have reached out to seek assistance from some unlikely helpers, 7 Boer Goats.
Boer Goats originate from South Africa and are predominantly a meat breed, in the UK they are the only pedigree meat breed and Charlotte intends to grow on the herd for this purpose. More information on the goats, their antics and their progress can be found on their Facebook page ‘Nibble & Co’.
Introducing the goats to Tophill Low means we can refocus our volunteer team allowing us to take on exciting new projects and give existing ones the time and effort they deserve. It is also significant because it is another step forward for Yorkshire Water and Tophill Low to reach the carbon net zero ambition by 2030. The goats enable us to leave the herbicides, the tractor, the brush cutters, the reapers and the chainsaws securely in the workshop, not having to use herbicides or fossil fuels, not burning the cuttings on a bonfire and probably most notably, not polluting the idyllic sound of nature that many of our visitors come to enjoy. Although, the idyllic sound of nature now features a lot of goat bleating!
In other news, work is being done to firm up the access to North Marsh Hide. With serious damp affecting the supporting beams under the boards we are working hard to replace the supports and get access back to the hide ready for future use.