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Spring time amooosement as organic cows meet their pasture

Date Published: 05/04/2012

It’s that time of year when the lambs are not the only ones to get in a bit of gamboling practice.

Allegedly (and it is only alleged, given the recent chilly turn in the weather) spring has sprung and the annual opening of the cow shed is well known to be met with glee by herds ready to celebrate the return to pasture.

So it was wonderful to see this captured on camera at the farm of OF&G licensee, Richard Cooper, courtesy of Compassion in World Farming, which was looking to illustrate how organic farming ensures the animals get to spend as much of their lives as possible in the great outdoors.

It really is heartwarming to see:

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Of course herds that get to live outside have always enjoyed their spring debut, though not so many get to become internet video stars in the process. Richard, of Little Morton Hall Farm, Cheshire, told us: “The rush when they’re turned out for the spring only happens that first time, so the camera crew had to be ready. We got them all set up in what we thought were good places to film and sent the herd out.”

Despite the herd’s enthusiasm to hit the pasture, Richard said the camera team came as a bit of a surprise to the first ones out, who initially did a bit of an about turn at the sight of them. However, they soon overcame their shyness and got on with the business at hand, leading to some great shots of precisely what CIWF was after – the behavioural display that perfectly demonstrates the excitement of being back in the field.

Richard explained: “The camera crew were very pleased. They got just what they wanted, with the animals running around, head wrestling and grubbing in the molehills. They filmed for about an hour-and-a-half, which was entertaining to watch. You have to welcome something a bit different like that going on on the farm!”

The mixed herd runs at 60-70 head and their milk goes to OMSCo, which put CIWF in touch with Richard, following a plea for a spot to shoot the film the campaign group was after.

The whole scenario is something that farmers have always been used to seeing, but it’s too easy to forget that these are scenes the milk-buying public don’t ordinarily get to enjoy and maybe we should all be looking for more opportunities to help the sector’s customers appreciate farm life…