Why Cows and Sheep Are Grazing Across From Buckingham Palace Right Now

John Stillwell/PA Wire

These animals may be the secret to the park’s biodiversity.

The royal family isn't the only one calling Buckingham Palace home—at least for the next week, that is. In an effort to boost bees and butterflies throughout the parks on the property, the Rare Breed Survival Trust and Madchute Park and Farm have teamed up to bring a few unexpected guests to live at nearby Green Park.

Cattle and sheep have been introduced to the area with the sole purpose of grazing on the wildflower meadows. Why? The hope is that the grazing will encourage a stronger variety of plant and wildlife, namely bees and butterflies.


John Stillwell/PA Wire

Buckingham Palace’s nearby parks are no stranger to field grazers. Last year, the involved conservation groups ran a successful trial with sheep. This year, they introduced cattle as they’re able to break up the fields quicker since they use a ripping motion when grazing. Using just sheep is a bit of a slower process as they just nibble while grazing, according to project leader Dr. Alice Laughton.

But it’s not just the bees and butterflies that benefit from the grazing—the act also provides more food sources for local birds and other small animals.

As if we needed more of a reason to buy an impromptu ticket to London.