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Hill Sheep

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hill sheep

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Hill Sheep

  1. 1. Hill Sheep Farming A case study
  2. 2. Hill sheep farming is: Commercial Pastoral Extensive And produces Lamb, wool and mutton
  3. 3. Location- Lake District
  4. 4. <ul><li>Without EU subsidies many farmers would make a loss </li></ul><ul><li>Changes in the market mean demand for outputs is lower than before </li></ul><ul><li>B and B in the farmhouse. </li></ul><ul><li>Renting some land as a camp site. </li></ul>Case Study Commercial Farming: Hill sheep Farming- Lake District UK Lambing Lambs sold for fattening in the lowland (for meat) Relief : upland with steep slopes Wool fleeces Money from bed and breakfast Soils : thin, rocky, acid and leached podsols Fertilising Shearing quadbikes Climate : 1°C fall in temperature every 160 metres. Market : small in local area. Very difficult accessibility to large markets. Short growing season. often little profit to reinvest Dipping EU subsidies and grants help some farmers Over 2000mm annual rainfall Tourism Profit little labour available in sparsely-populated uplands Fodder crops <ul><li>Changes to </li></ul><ul><ul><li>the system </li></ul></ul>Process: Farmer – decision maker Physical Inputs: Human & Economic Inputs Diversification Enterprises: Outputs: Profit for reinvestment
  5. 5. Characteristics of a Hill Sheep Farm There are three zones of land use:   The fell: the tops of the hills over 300m altitude – sheep graze on this open land in the summer; The intake or lower slopes: divided into fields by dry stone walls, some pasture is improved by adding drainage and fertilisers; The inbye: the small area of land on the valley floor close to the farm buildings – more fertile soils and sheltered. Used for lambing, shearing etc. and for growing some winter fodder crops, e.g. turnips, hay.
  6. 6. Problems with Hill Sheep Farming -Hill sheep farming is not always profitable – the land is marginal. -The threat of removal of subsidies from the EU. -EU Quotas (limits) on the number of sheep that can be kept. -Foot and mouth disease has restricted sheep movement and sales. -Radioactive fall-out from the Chernobyl accident (1986) affected mountain grazing land. Restrictions on sheep sales is still in force in some areas. -Costs, e.g. fuel, machinery, fodder, have all risen. Lamb prices in the late 1990s collapsed. -Fewer young people want to carry on sheep farming. -Conflicts with tourists and National Park Authorities.
  7. 7. Problems with Hill Sheep Farming
  8. 8. Changes and Improvements - Farmers are continuing to leave the land or take part-time jobs in nearby towns, if available -New breeding stock to improve quality and quantity of meat and wool. -Greater use of fertilisers to improve quality of pasture. -Grants for new farm buildings so lambing can be done indoors. -EU subsidies and grants to encourage continuation of livestock farming in upland areas. -EU grants to protect and improve the farm environment e.g. conservation of dry stonewalls, natural pastures, stone barns, and hedgerows. -EU grants to encourage diversification of farms, either farm-based, e.g. organic farming, rearing other animals (deer, goats), or non-farm based, e.g. campsites, sporting activities, forestry, arts and crafts, rural tourism. -EU grants to conserve and enhancement the landscape for wildlife. Areas designated as Environmentally Sensitive (ESAs) qualify for grants to reduce the --use of fertilisers, restore heather moorland and wetlands. -Some farms could not survive and have been sold – often as second homes.