CMS volunteers have provided cattle with an alternative source of water to the River Beane.
One of the charms of Waterford Marsh is the openness of the River Beane, allowing visitors to wander along its banks and get close to wildlife. Seeing cattle standing in the shallow sections of the river also adds to the site's rural character, but the ecological impact of this can be negative due to the poaching of riverbanks.
The Countryside Management Service (CMS) led project at Waterford Marsh has looked at ways in which the impact of cattle poaching can be reduced without the need to fence off the entire river. One of the solutions has been to provide an alternative source of water for cattle through the installation of a 'Pasture Pump'. These are small devices that allow the animals to mechanically draw water from the river into a small trough.
The CMS volunteers did a fantastic job installing one of these pasture pumps at Waterford Marsh and constructing a small protective structure. As per instructions, the cattle were then shown how to use the pump and, lo and behold, figured it out almost immediately! Over the next few months we will monitor the effectiveness of the pump and, if successful, will look to install an additional one towards the southern end of the site.
For further information about the project please visit the Waterford Marsh Project Page.