The Woodland Trust has given a herd of Luing cattle access to a large area of newly established native woodland on its Glen Finglas estate for the first time since it was planted fifteen years ago.
They cause minimal damage to the young trees and their hooves are perfect for breaking up ground, allowing seeds to take root, the trust claims, adding that they also help ground flora by grazing on coarse grasses and trampling bracken.
Glen Finglas estate manager Phil Gordon said: "As long as a healthy balance is maintained, grazing and expanding native woodland can run hand-in-hand. Trees provide shelter and shade for the livestock, and cattle are naturally designed to keep other vegetation down and break up the ground."
Glen Finglas forms part of The Great Trossachs Forest, a woodland restoration project covering 160 sq km between Loch Lomond and Callander.