Bagot Goats make much anticipated return to Cromer cliffs for a summer of conservation grazing
Date published: 22nd July 2021
The Council’s most beloved employees have been reintroduced to Cromer’s cliffs to resume their summer occupation of advanced technical grazing.
The Bagot Goats, who have been wintering in Salthouse, carry out an important habitat-management role which poses great difficulty and expense when carried out by machine-operated conservation; the goats are able to maintain the vegetation and encourage the ecological balance of the cliff, without destroying the local fauna through over-consumption.
The return of the goats has been eagerly anticipated by locals who have grown fond of seeing them traversing the grassy cliffs acrobatically and carrying out their vital environmental work.
Emily Capps, Assistant Director for Environment and Leisure Services said:
“We’re all pleased to see the goats return to Cromer and just in time for the arrival of visitors and tourists to the town. They have had a long winter in Salthouse and are certainly ready to begin the delicate conservation that’s a technical challenge for humans, but so natural and instinctive to them.
Their return has been much anticipated, by local residents and by the cliffs which are in need of landscaping”
The Bagot is believed to be Britain’s oldest breed of goat and unlike most other breeds – that favour mountains and uplands – it developed in the English lowlands. Bagots are very hardy and easy to tame and have been hugely popular with residents and visitors.
This herd first came to Cromer in 2016, when eight goats began the task of keeping the cliff habitat under control. Now, the numbers are over 20, with many ‘on-loan’ to the National Wildlife Trust, sustainably grazing lands elsewhere in the county.
It is estimated they save around £15,000 a year. The goats have their own merchandise, which helps to fund their upkeep and make the project self-sustainable.
Merchandise can be found at the North Norfolk Visitor Centre