Heroes of Belvoir Nick Smith

Oct 14, 2019 | Belvoir Blog

Heroes of Belvoir Nick Smith Estate & Livestock Manager

Nick Smith is the Belvoir Estate livestock manager and is responsible for almost 3000 sheep and 70 cattle over an area of land that covers 1580 acres. (That the size of 640 Twickenham pitches put side by side)! The large acreage means the livestock can graze naturally in a rotating environmental scheme of carefully planned grass management.

All in a day’s work
Nick’s first task of the day is to check over any vulnerable animals; that can be lambs, expectant mothers (during the breeding season), or any animal that might be recovering from illness or injury. Fencing, water supply and feeding is also on the daily agenda. Environmental challenges also add to the daily routine such as the need to apply fly repellents in the summer, to breaking ice in troughs during the
coolest of winters.

Early June saw the lambing of 1400 lambs and pleased to report that they’re continuing to do well. Early July saw Nick and his team shear
the entire flock of sheep in preparation for the hot summer.

There are four different sheep breeds onthe estate, North Country Mules, Lleyn,New Zealand Romney and Suffolk Crossthe lambing this season has gone exactlyaccording to plan. And there’s more….This may seem an enormous amount of responsibility that needs dedication and faultless organisation, but in addition to this Nick also manages 20 Hereford cows on His Grace, The Duke of Rutland’s
the Croxton Estate, Twenty-five Hereford heifers and thirty-five Short Horn heifers.

One man and his dog/s
To keep all the sheep in check, Nick works with a team of obedient working dogs; Floss, Jazz, Pip and Jess are pictured below, but he also works with two black Labradors, a Jack Russell and three more sheep dogs. With all this outdoor activity, what does Nick do in his spare time? He spends time with family, and enjoys as many outdoor activities as he can, motor sport, rugby and fishing!