On green pastures I look at light patches of sheep flocks…
High pastures stretch just below a glacial snow cover and bare rocks. This poor grassy area is grazed by wild animals as well as by our livestock. In European mountains small grasses like Mat grass (Nardus stricta
), Oreochloa disticha
, Sesleria varia
, some species of fescue (Festuca supina
, F. versicolor
), Agrostis rupestris
, Poa alpina
or small-reed (Calamagrostis
) dominate in a high meadow vegetation. During hiking we meet most often flocks of sheep. In lower positions there are also pastured herds of cattle and horses. Goats graze xerothermic shrubs and grasslands in extremely poor and dry areas. Grazing yaks we can observe in Tibet, Nepal and other vicinity of the Himalayas. Camelids like llamas, alpacas, guanacos and vicunas graze in the Andes. Mountain human tribes often practice nomad pastoralism, e.g. in high mountains of Afghanistan and Pakistan. A common diurnal practice there is a night-morning and evening-night grazing. An agropastoral activity is typical for many sites in European mountains and it depends on a productivity of mountain meadows which are harvested for hay. In North America almost 70% of the dairy and beef cattle is pastured and foraged. Perennial grasses are a main forage for our livestock. The grazing flocks are protected against carnivorous mammals like bears and wolfs by sheep-dogs. Many human tribes and nations bred own beautiful dogs. In Poland it is “owczarek podhalański” (Polish Tatra sheepdog), in the Central Asia it is a huge and brave Turkmen Alabaj, in the mountains of Asia Minor a dangerous Turkisch Akbash or in Scotland collie and border collie. At present some small herds of horses are also maintained in mountains for a tourist horse riding.
It will be continued….
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