Wilder Doddington takes an exciting leap forward with new fencing.
You may have noticed some hedge trimming around the perimeter of the Wilder Doddington estate over the last few weeks. You may have also seen our lovely new fencing being erected. This hedge cutting and fencing is the next exciting step forwards in the Wilder Doddington journey. We can’t let our cattle graze their new fields until they are fenced.
A key element of our natural regeneration of wood pasture is the way that cattle, deer (and in the future pigs and ponies) create a mosaic of habitats through their different browsing habits. To allow this to happen, and to give our beautiful Lincoln Red cattle more space to live in and a more varied diet, we need to fence the roadsides of the Wilder Doddington farm. A surprising number of the old cropping fields were not fenced at all since they haven’t had livestock in them for many years. Two roads run through the farm and so there are three blocks of land, all needing fencing.
Where there are already hedges we have trimmed these back so that we can build the new fences and leave as much land as possible inside the fence line for the cattle. We expect that the hedges will soon grow to meet and even hide the fences. Meanwhile we will slowly be removing any internal fences, giving us three large areas that the cattle can roam across. The internal hedgerows on the farm are not being cut, they are being allowed to grow and flourish although we will try to offer lots of variation and we may do limited hedgelaying and coppicing to encourage a variety of habitats.
Whilst on the face of things, hedgerow cutting may not seem in keeping with our Wilder vision, it is all for the greater good of both our cattle and increasing biodiversity and wildlife at Wilder Doddington and the local area. We have done the hedge trimming in the winter to avoid having an impact on hedge nesting birds. Once the fencing is erected our hedgerows will only be cut where we need to provide clear spaces for road safety, footpaths, bridleways and access.
Follow our journey to get Wilder at Doddington: