Matching type of livestock to desired biodiversity outcomes in pastures - a review

  • Published source details Rook A.J., Dumont B., Isselstein J., Osoro K., WallisDeVries M.F., Parente G. & Mills J. (2004) Matching type of livestock to desired biodiversity outcomes in pastures - a review. Biological Conservation, 119, 137-150.


This study is summarised as evidence for the following.

Action Category

Use traditional breeds of livestock

Action Link
Farmland Conservation
  1. Use traditional breeds of livestock

    A 2004 literature review (Rook et al. 2004) found 11 studies that compared the feeding behaviour of different sheep or cattle breeds in fairly controlled conditions. Only one study monitored the effects on vegetation. This UK study (Newborn et al. 1993, later reported as Newborn 2000) found that Hebridean sheep caused more of a decline in purple moor grass Molinia caerula than Swaledale sheep, when this plant was growing with heather Calluna vulgaris. On the basis of findings from all eleven studies, the authors concluded that the different breeds of livestock have only minor differences in their feeding behaviour and these differences are mostly due to body size.

    Additional references:

    Newborn D., Wakeham A. & Booth F. (1993) Grazing and the control of purple moor grass. Game Conservancy Council Review.

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