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The Cows of The Castle
We all know that the queen loves her Corgis and is a very fond of horses, but did you know she also loves her Cows? That's right! Although we are used to seeing our monarch in her finery, opening hospitals, hosting foreign ambassadors and waving from her Bently State Limousin, Queen Elizabeth likes nothing more than wandering her 50,000-acre estate in the Scottish Highlands, watching an episode of Countryfile and of course, tending to her cows.
Queen Elizabeth II & Prince Phillip
with the Highland Cattle at Balmoral
Now of course you won't find these Cows grazing in the gardens of Buckingham Palace. The dairy herd of jersey cows live their regal lives at Windsor Castle and her summer home at Balmoral is where her Highland Cows roam, lead by her favourite Black Highland Bull, Smurf.
Of course, all the queens cows live a life of luxury, sleeping on lush water beds to massage away the aches of the day, being milked with the best technology and attended to by robots who will scratch their backs and even clean their mess.
Her majesty has a great love of her animals and takes an active role in their farming, making all the decisions from which machinery to buy and where to plant a tree to naming the latest calf. In fact, the Queen's compassion for cows has lead to Windsor Castle being home to the largest herd of Sussex cattle in the world, all due to the fact that her majesty herd that the local breed was at risk with only 6,000 breeding females.
The Queen, Prince Phillip and a young prince Charles enjoying the calves,
'I often wonder that if she hadn't been queen she would have been a great farmers wife. She adores the countryside and there's not much she doesn't know about it." Terry Pendry, Windsor head groom.
But Queen Elizabeth II is probably best known for her magnificent herd of Highland Cows. The Balmoral fold of Highland Cattle was formed in 1953 and is now considered one of the UK’s top Highland breeders. With over fifty shaggy beasts roaming the land they are a fine herd indeed, with her cows selling for a very fine sum indeed.
Below is a wonderful moment when The Queen's 4 year old bull Ruaridh won first in his Class and Reserve Championship of the Glasgow Cattle Show in 2013.
So if anyone gives you a funny look when you tell them of your love of cows just remember, you are in very good company!
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